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Dr-Worm
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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-05 02:02:14 Reply

Now that I've seen some shit at the NYFF here's my accurate and updated top 20 of the year so far (I'm still seeing Terence Davies's new movie at the festival next week and watching the new Thai horror-ish movie The Blue Hour for this Hoop-Tober thing sometime this month, but whatever):

1. Toni Erdmann
2. Manchester by the Sea
3. Certain Women
4. The Lobster
5. The Witch
6. Kubo and the Two Strings
7. Cemetery of Splendor
8. Sunset Song
9. Kaili Blues
10. Swiss Army Man
11. Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping
12. Right Now, Wrong Then
13. Lemonade
14. Cosmos
15. Tickled
16. Green Room
17. Gimme Danger
18. Weiner
19. The Fits
20. Hail, Caesar!

At 9/19/16 07:31 PM, Natick wrote: that may be true but of what institution?

Marriage? Modern dating? The romance-industrial complex? I dunno man, it's a pretty broad, goofy social satire. The film uses some classic dystopian iconography but I would be wary of taking any of that iconography at face value.

“The Lobster,” by contrast, deploys grand mechanisms for trivial stakes. Lanthimos’s lachrymose lament for a world centered on couples and a subworld centered on solitaires betrays a cranky, dyspeptic sense of sexual and romantic dysphoria, not a lament for the state of society or of the human condition but an airing of his own petty complaints.

Yes, Richie. That's what makes it funny. I mean there's no accounting for taste, but geez.

and i completely fail to see what it's a metaphor of, beyond making fun of dating services. i laughed at a couple of parts for their absurdism, but that's not enough. i went into this expecting something provocative and witty about heteronormativity, and instead, it felt stiff, complacent, and apolitical.

Considering the rigid and occasionally graphic nature of the film's aesthetics it definitely ends up approaching its subject with a much lighter touch than I might have expected, but I didn't find that too disappointing.

At 9/11/16 11:17 PM, GundamBlunt wrote: I've been in a documentary mood recently, so looking to discover other greats too.

Here's a Letterboxd list of my favorites.

I'd especially recommend checking out some of the work of Les Blank, since his stuff tends to be very short, highly watchable, tonally light, and totally awesome. They're my favorite cinematic snacks.

At 9/23/16 08:25 AM, Jackho wrote: One thing I'd have liked is a bit more subtlety and obscurity, not in the possible interpretations but just the literal events of the film. We have to just accept that Satan exists but if a few scenes were done slightly differently it would be unclear whether there actually was a witch or a demonic presence at all. Playing it straight is sort of refreshing too but the ambiguity would have been nice.

But then the movie would most likely lose what I thought was its best quality, the way it totally commits to presenting things from the family's 17th century Puritan worldview. Plus it just makes the movie that much scarier to dispense with all the hemming and hawing right off the bat. The undeniable fact that there is a goddamn vvitch out there hangs menacingly over every subsequent scene.

At 9/27/16 02:23 PM, Quisty wrote: Hoping to join your club :D

Willkommen!

In October I watch one horror movie per day, like a Horror fest. I'm looking for any suggestions on some great films. Let me know if you have any recommendations.

I'm doing something similar (the Letterboxd "Hoop-Tober" challenge @Jackho was talking about; so far I've watched the original Little Shop of Horrors, the Vadim/Malle/Fellini Poe anthology Spirits of the Dead, and the classic Universal Frankenstein), but typically horror movies are a huge blind spot for me so I wouldn't have much in the way of recommendations you aren't likely to have already seen or heard of. My mostly obvious favorite horror movies I've seen so far though are probably:

The Thing (Carpenter, 1982)
Don't Look Now (Roeg, 1973)
Possession (Zulawski, 1981)
House (Obayashi, 1977)

Also, my friend and I love to talk about Criterion films from The Criterion Collection. Any Criterion lovers on here?

Yeah. I've actually been inside the Criterion Closet and even got to take a couple movies home.

If I'm not mistaken there's another 50% off flash sale just around the corner. I can tell by the soft weeping sounds I can hear coming from my wallet in the night.

Also the goat was the best actor by far.

Yeah but just watch, the Oscars will only nominate white goats again. Sigh.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-05 08:34:52 Reply

At 10/5/16 02:02 AM, Dr-Worm wrote: Willkommen!

Thankies :D

The Thing (Carpenter, 1982)
Don't Look Now (Roeg, 1973)
Possession (Zulawski, 1981)
House (Obayashi, 1977)

The Thing is just so great, and still holds up with effects.

Yeah. I've actually been inside the Criterion Closet and even got to take a couple movies home.

So jealous!

If I'm not mistaken there's another 50% off flash sale just around the corner. I can tell by the soft weeping sounds I can hear coming from my wallet in the night.

Yes, but alas, my passport expired. I am stuck in Canada a while.

Yeah but just watch, the Oscars will only nominate white goats again. Sigh.

lol damn racist Oscars

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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-05 11:38:13 (edited 2016-10-05 11:39:16) Reply

At 10/2/16 08:58 PM, Quisty wrote: I watched The Witch off Netflix.
The movie was okay

Black Phillip told me ur a meanie & he's gon get u

At 10/5/16 02:02 AM, Dr-Worm wrote: Plus it just makes the movie that much scarier to dispense with all the hemming and hawing right off the bat. The undeniable fact that there is a goddamn vvitch out there hangs menacingly over every subsequent scene.

I don't fully agree with this, the biggest source of fear / tension for me was in the family turning on eachother rather than the outside interference, and that their hysteria and group mentality was strong enough even with so few people to actually affect me as the viewer, like there were two times I was thinking "wait, maybe Thomasin actually is..." when that line of thought should be absurd. Is rly gud tbh. No one would be able to stay reasonable there. And I do love how thoroughly it immerses one in the god-fearing protestant mentality of the characters, the religion has a weight and sincerity you don't see often.

I don't dislike how it's done, it's just my preference clouding what the film is actually trying to be. I'm also still thinking of 10 Cloverfield (definitely not as good a film overall) which does an excellent job of feeding you evidence and then making you second guess it right up until the end.

The other day I had to walk a bit alone at night, and upon hearing some movement in the trees in front of me (something I normally wouldn't even notice), "oh fuck I'm gonna get witched" was the actual thought my brain decided to spring on me... so uh, I guess the presence of a witch did leave more of an impression on me than I thought. Horror films have never been able to get into my head like that, only books. Definitely one of those films that just get better the more you think about it.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-06 12:06:44 Reply

At 10/5/16 11:38 AM, Jackho wrote: Black Phillip told me ur a meanie & he's gon get u

Ill sign that book lol.

Any film festivals in your town? Mine has one coming up but not too many films.
http://www.windsorfilmfestival.com/films/

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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-07 12:58:05 Reply

I've been watching horror movies everyday for 31 days of horror.
So far, I've watched

A Serbian Film
Human Centipede
Child's Play
Sharknado 4 (it sucked)
Jason

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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-07 17:33:10 Reply

At 10/6/16 12:06 PM, Quisty wrote: Any film festivals in your town? Mine has one coming up but not too many films.
http://www.windsorfilmfestival.com/films/

There's the Glasgow Film Festival every year. Decent sized event.

There's an anime thing on some time this month too, but I've learned from experience that the sort of people who go to see anime in the cinema are not the sort of people you want to be sat in a cinema with. Went to a screening of Nausicaa a while back and I still gag when I think of the smell.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-08 01:46:41 Reply

Saw Deepwater Horizon. I was surprisingly moved to tears. No joke. It's an excellent film.

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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-09 09:34:50 (edited 2016-10-09 09:36:06) Reply

Planning on slipping out of work early to see Shin Gojira Tuesday. Closest cinema showing it is an hour away, only playing the film for two days with one showing each night. This seems to be my one and only chance until a Blu-ray release unless there ends up being a second wave of theaters down the road.

Wish me luck.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-10 16:18:15 Reply

Finally got around to Green Room after missing it at the cinema.

That was good. One of the best of the year. Fantastic stuff throughout.

Also saw War on Everyone, which was just about passable. Real shame, was expecting so much more after The Guard and Calvary. Just wasn't that funny.

This weekend: Louis Theroux's scientology thing, which should be fun, and American Honey, which looks right up my street.

Next weekend: I, Daniel Blake. Holy shit I am so excited for I, Daniel Blake.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-10 17:05:59 Reply

All Good Things

Just watched this film. It was pretty good. I found the first half better than the last. Ryan Gosling is awesome in this. I see not many people liked it based on online reviews, but I did!!!

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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-18 04:49:42 Reply

Just got done with the last of the original Planet of the Apes films last night. Really enjoyed these, even the lesser liked entries. The 2001 Planet of the Apes film might end up being next on my watchlist, but the Letterboxd scores don't look promising. On the plus side, once that's out of the way I can move onto the reboot, which I've not seen since their original releases.

Almost cleared out my BluRay backlog too. 15 films left and then I'll have to start ordering some new ones:

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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-20 13:01:10 Reply

Accidentally got hype for Logan because I'm such a mark for X-23 even though I know it's going to be the same shit as all superhero films.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-24 13:18:09 Reply

Shin Gojira was p dang darn good. Having ol' Goji stomping around without any other monsters to interact with again is a weird feeling, but they did a pretty good job. The team of human characters were likeable and I really enjoyed watching them work together. The political aspect of the story seemed like it worked well. I'm not the most familiar with Japanese politics, so I don't think it quite had the same impact for me as it did for other audiences, but I could understand what they were going for and the message was conveyed clearly enough for a stupid foreigner like me to grasp.

The use of old music and sound effects was an interesting choice. Sometimes it worked well, other times it seemed really jarring and out of place. Wish the music used in the trailer had more of a presence, it worked really well in the scenes they utilized it in, and I feel like it could've had more of a lasting impact if they stuck with that style more.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-26 19:11:59 Reply

I'm planning to watch some horror films this week, with Halloween coming up and all. Stephen King's It happened to be on TV, so I figured I might as well start with that.

The horror and mystery is pretty intriguing, but it just has a few too many flaws to really be good. Mostly it's just that many scenes come off as really silly, particularly in the second part. The second part starts out with two montage scenes that are way too cheesy and they completely break the atmosphere that they were building up in part one. What really saves the film for me though is Tim Curry as Pennywise.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-26 19:51:18 Reply

At 10/26/16 07:11 PM, Auz wrote: I'm planning to watch some horror films this week, with Halloween coming up and all.

All month for me.

Stephen King's It happened to be on TV, so I figured I might as well start with that.

The horror and mystery is pretty intriguing, but it just has a few too many flaws to really be good. Mostly it's just that many scenes come off as really silly, particularly in the second part. The second part starts out with two montage scenes that are way too cheesy and they completely break the atmosphere that they were building up in part one. What really saves the film for me though is Tim Curry as Pennywise.

Haven't seen that since I was in my mid teens, but I recall thinking it fell apart in part two, or at least at the end with the spider.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-26 20:33:13 Reply

At 10/26/16 07:51 PM, Sense-Offender wrote:
At 10/26/16 07:11 PM, Auz wrote: I'm planning to watch some horror films this week, with Halloween coming up and all.
All month for me.

Gotta put The Birds on my watchlist for this week.

Stephen King's It happened to be on TV, so I figured I might as well start with that.

The horror and mystery is pretty intriguing, but it just has a few too many flaws to really be good. Mostly it's just that many scenes come off as really silly, particularly in the second part. The second part starts out with two montage scenes that are way too cheesy and they completely break the atmosphere that they were building up in part one. What really saves the film for me though is Tim Curry as Pennywise.
Haven't seen that since I was in my mid teens, but I recall thinking it fell apart in part two, or at least at the end with the spider.

I couldn't help but laugh when they were kicking and stomping it. The answer to the mystery seemed okay with me, but the way they pulled it off the ending didn't work at all.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-28 16:58:22 Reply

A lovely thing arrived just in time for halloween.

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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-30 07:28:20 Reply

The Cabin in the Woods was on TV last night so I gave that a watch because I know @Jackho really liked it. It was kind of entertaining but when I was reading over some of the reviews people left on Letterboxd afterwards, @TheMaster pretty much sums up my feelings on it. The scary wasn't scary enough and the funny wasn't funny enough.

Minor spoilers below

I got more interested nearer the end, when they thought it was all over only to realise it wasn't. But everything after the elevator didn't really do it for me. It went a bit too overboard, which has to have been what they were going for, but it's not what I was wanting. I was expecting to see something terrifying and it didn't happen.

At 10/28/16 04:58 PM, TheMaster wrote: A lovely thing arrived just in time for halloween.

Love the art style on that box.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-30 07:57:00 Reply

Also, just found out that my local cinema is finally launching a membership scheme. I used to work for them when I was 16-17, and have only been back a handful of times since I left (I'm nearly 25 now). If the price is reasonable and the benefits are worthwhile, I'm definitely going to sign up for it. It is an independent cinema though, so not sure what to expect in terms of how it will compare to the big chains offerings.

Cineworld offer unlimited films and discount on food and drink for £17.40 a month. I think if my local cinema were to have a similar scheme for <£25 I'd be interested. Any more than that and probably not. Any cinema other than my local is at least an hours drive away, so makes paying a little extra seem justifiable.

Quite excited to find out more about their new membership scheme though. Any of you guys members of any cinema schemes? What are the costs and benefits like at your local cinemas?


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-30 09:35:36 Reply

At 10/30/16 07:57 AM, Dean wrote: It is an independent cinema though, so not sure what to expect in terms of how it will compare to the big chains offerings.

In my experience, worth paying for, but not amazing.

The one I go to in Newcastle is £30 a year, which gets you two free tickets (~£9 each normally), 10% off food and £2 off all future tickets. So you need to see around 8 films to make it worthwhile. Also get a brochure to your door every other month with everything that's going to be on in the near future, and free online booking where it's normally like £1.50.

The one in Glasgow is very similar, but you get 4 free tickets, early booking of shows before they go on general sale, and £1 off future ones for £40 a year. With tickets again about £9, you're looking at needing to see 8 films until it pays for itself.

They're the sort of things that will save you money, but only if you were going to go anyway. Not the sort of thing that gives you an excuse to go every weekend like the unlimited ones.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-30 09:42:20 Reply

At 10/30/16 09:35 AM, TheMaster wrote: They're the sort of things that will save you money, but only if you were going to go anyway. Not the sort of thing that gives you an excuse to go every weekend like the unlimited ones.

Well, I sent them a message on Facebook with some chat since I used to work for them. They confirmed it's not going to be an unlimited films offer. They're keeping it a bit hush hush until the launch, so no idea what the offer is actually going to be. That being the case, it's probably not going to get me going to the cinema any more regularly. Bit disappointed actually. Makes me wish I was closer to a Cineworld cinema.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-30 10:17:19 Reply

At 10/30/16 09:42 AM, Dean wrote: Bit disappointed actually. Makes me wish I was closer to a Cineworld cinema.

You couldn't pay me to go to a multiplex, and I used to live next door to one. Went to it once, and then immediately went back to walking half an hour across town to go to the nearest independent instead. They're dire.

Just wish the GFT in Glasgow would hurry up and get their refurb done. Been going for months and the big screen has been shut the entire time. Their second screen isn't bad, but the third is a cupboard, and since they have so many special events on and they inevitably go in the largest available, if you're just after watching a normal film release chances are you'll be stuck with that.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-30 13:37:46 Reply

I've never had a negative experience with or at a cinema, but I don't go much at all.

Anyway movies are for fucking nerds, did anyone watch the new season of Black Mirror? Still really good, might be the best season.

Also been watching American Horror Story, this is the best it's been since season 2 for sure. Coven turned to shit half way and I didn't even finish Freak Show but this is way back on track. It still meanders a bit but episode 1 and 5 are genuinely pretty good, and starting with episode 6 there's a drastic shift in the narrative that completely changes the tone.

It still wobbles along like a horror film with brain damage but they've successfully upped the spoopyness and done something really quite creative with the format.

Also also watching South Park for the first time in years, the new season is all one continuous narrative for a change and it's been pretty good. Maybe not as funny but it's been clever and actually tense at some parts.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-30 14:09:39 Reply

At 10/30/16 01:37 PM, Jackho wrote: I've never had a negative experience with or at a cinema, but I don't go much at all.

Anyway movies are for fucking nerds, did anyone watch the new season of Black Mirror? Still really good, might be the best season.

Been meaning to see that.

Also been watching American Horror Story, this is the best it's been since season 2 for sure. Coven turned to shit half way and I didn't even finish Freak Show but this is way back on track. It still meanders a bit but episode 1 and 5 are genuinely pretty good, and starting with episode 6 there's a drastic shift in the narrative that completely changes the tone.

Really? It's good? It looked like boring found footage stuff. I only saw Freakshow (meh) and Hotel (not good) but I'm on episode 10 of Asylum, which is actually pretty good so far. Yeah, I skipped Murder House. I just wanted to see the one everyone likes the most. I saw the first half of episode one of Murder House, though, and it looked like it could be good.

Oh, I just saw the middle finger scene in the Taxi while typing this. Oh man. haha

Also also watching South Park for the first time in years, the new season is all one continuous narrative for a change and it's been pretty good. Maybe not as funny but it's been clever and actually tense at some parts.

This is the first time I've just simply not watched the season. It's just not been good for ten years, now, in my opinion. I don't know why I kept watching. I re-watched the first two and a half seasons a while ago and it cracked me up still.

I also started Ash VS Evil Dead and it is fun. Evangelion has been on pause for October (all horror, nothing but horror all the time).


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-30 18:20:10 (edited 2016-10-30 18:20:56) Reply

At 10/30/16 01:37 PM, Jackho wrote: Also watching South Park for the first time in years, the new season is all one continuous narrative for a change and it's been pretty good. Maybe not as funny but it's been clever and actually tense at some parts.

The past couple of seasons have had a running story arc. I like the mix up that it has given the series, especially now that I can keep up with current events; Trump, net neutrality, cyber bullying etc. and see how they parody it in the next episode. I've always liked the show but I have to admit it was becoming stale before this new, more satirical direction.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-31 09:53:28 (edited 2016-10-31 10:01:29) Reply

At 10/30/16 02:09 PM, Sense-Offender wrote: Been meaning to see that.

The show or just the new season? It's one of my favourites either way. I rewatched season 1 as well, totally forgot how insane the first episode is. Such a spectrum of emotion squeezed into 40 minutes.

Really? It's good? It looked like boring found footage stuff. I only saw Freakshow (meh) and Hotel (not good) but I'm on episode 10 of Asylum, which is actually pretty good so far.

I think it's been great actually, it has the same issue of them just piling on more and more monsters and it's dragged out a bit. It's still clearly written as it goes on rather than planned out but it's much more concise than Coven onward and has only 10 episodes instead of the usual 13.

It's hard to explain without spoiling but episode 6 totally changes the season and makes it far better. Still 3 episodes left for it all to go out the window though and a lot of this is going to hinge on how they handle the ending.

Yeah, I skipped Murder House. I just wanted to see the one everyone likes the most. I saw the first half of episode one of Murder House, though, and it looked like it could be good.

Murder House actually might be my favourite, it meanders a lot and there's no rules or logic to the ghosts other than plot convenience but I think it had the best characters and emotional impact. Ending was great too.

First half of Coven is really fun as well, it just loses all momentum after a point and by the finale it's a train wreck. Might still be worth watching.

Oh, I just saw the middle finger scene in the Taxi while typing this. Oh man. haha

Man that was great, I miss Zachary Quinto in the later seasons. I should rewatch 1 and 2 as well.

This is the first time I've just simply not watched the season. It's just not been good for ten years, now, in my opinion. I don't know why I kept watching. re-watched the first two and a half seasons a while ago and it cracked me up still.

I dunno, I blazed through seasons 17-19 over a couple days mainly as background noise and I had some really good laughs at a few episodes. Like in the VR episode, the whole Randy-Lorde thing, or in the isis ninjas one they use the same joke at least three times but it keeps getting funnier.

Season 20 is definitely a step higher than what the show has been for a long time though, and while some stuff carries over a lot of it is new and self-contained, like Cartman is basically a completely different character for the sake of the new story.

I'm kind of annoyed every time South Park gets renewed as I don't think any show should go on this long and Trey would be better off putting his creative energy into a new project, but this is sort of as close as you can get to being a different show while dealing with 19 years of baggage.

Haven't watched the early seasons in a long time but I think the movie still holds up, too.

Evangelion has been on pause for October (all horror, nothing but horror all the time).

There is not one thing you can watch as horrific as some of the end scenes of the show and EoE. Existential dread is best dread.

At 10/30/16 06:20 PM, Decky wrote: The past couple of seasons have had a running story arc.

Not quite to this extent, where every episode is a cliffhanger. But yeah the satire is really on point at times.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-31 18:57:56 Reply

At 10/30/16 01:37 PM, Jackho wrote: Anyway movies are for fucking nerds, did anyone watch the new season of Black Mirror? Still really good, might be the best season.

I watched the first two episodes tonight and thought they were probably the weakest in the show's history. The first makes its point in the first 5 minutes and then goes on for an hour with absolutely nothing surprising happening, and the second is a concept that has been done to death already. Shit, Rick and Morty did the whole "simulation inside a simulation" thing better.

Hell of a long way from something like the Christmas special, with the utterly terrifying ending, or White Bear, with the amazing twist.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-31 19:16:06 Reply

In the remainder of the week to Halloween, I watched these:

Gremlins
This one actually gave me nightmares as a kid. I remember I only watched it to about the halfway point before I got too scared and turned it off. Having watched it now, I must say that there are some pretty freaky scenes. For the most part, it's really silly and campy though, and overall fairly enjoyable. I imagine I may have been nostalgic about it if I had enjoyed it as a kid.

Rosemary's Baby
Although this film is almost 50 years old, it holds up very well to this day I would say. What I particularly liked is that there are multiple levels to the horror. There are elements of supernatural horror, but it's also a psychological thriller and it works really well on both levels. I'm afraid I'll spoil the ending if I say too much about it, but I really liked the final scenes.

Alien 3
I think the direction (by David Fincher) is pretty impressive for a debut. However, the film itself is just kind of a bore in my opinion. Apart from Charles Dance, I couldn't really get invested in any of the characters, and the horror is nothing that I hadn't seen before in earlier Alien films. Also, they really messed up the CGI in some scenes. There's one shot where the alien is literally green.

The Thing
Similar to the original Alien, there's something about the monster that's really fascinating. I actually kept looking forward to the next time The Thing would show up again, even though it's very gross. Anyway, it's a good horror film in my opinion, although the writing can be criticized. For one, there seemed to be a few cases where characters came to conclusions a little bit too quickly. Secondly, there are definitely some instances where you can question the logic of the characters. If I remember correctly, they quickly figure out that The Thing only strikes when it's alone with someone, but still they keep going about the base on their own or in groups of two.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-10-31 19:20:36 Reply

At 10/31/16 09:53 AM, Jackho wrote:
At 10/30/16 02:09 PM, Sense-Offender wrote: Been meaning to see that.
The show or just the new season? It's one of my favourites either way. I rewatched season 1 as well, totally forgot how insane the first episode is. Such a spectrum of emotion squeezed into 40 minutes.

Oh, the show. It sounds like it's good.

It's still clearly written as it goes on rather than planned out

This is how I've felt with every season I've seen. Is it really that way? I finished Asylum yesterday and it's definitely way better than Freakshow and Hotel. I'll probably see Murder House some day.

Season 20 is definitely a step higher than what the show has been for a long time though, and while some stuff carries over a lot of it is new and self-contained, like Cartman is basically a completely different character for the sake of the new story.

Bleh. I thought the Isis ninjas thing was kinda funny, too. What really made me laugh was the BUCKLE UP, BUCKAROO bit at the beginning of the season. And the episode about drones had its moments. But for the most part, I've been very bored with South Park since I was in high school, and it's not me getting older.

Existential dread is best dread.

Now, that makes me think of the Gantz comic. The show kinda sucked, but man, that was a good comic.


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Response to Cinema Club 2016-11-01 08:59:18 (edited 2016-11-01 09:06:48) Reply

At 10/31/16 06:57 PM, TheMaster wrote: I watched the first two episodes tonight and thought they were probably the weakest in the show's history. The first makes its point in the first 5 minutes and then goes on for an hour with absolutely nothing surprising happening, and the second is a concept that has been done to death already.

I don't agree but I can see why you'd say that. This show has never been overly clever or subtle and each season has had a pure, on-the-nose satire episode (Fifteen Million Merits, Waldo). Nosedive is similar in that it's all fairly obvious from the start but I still found it an enjoyable episode, it's well made, paced, acted, has some of the more interesting and polished aesthetics, and the main character's arc felt smooth and natural rather than a sudden heel turn. She has to learn through gradual experience rather than just being told what she's doing wrong which they sort of subverted. Ending was good too.

It's also a real thing in China if you didn't know, a numeric score for everyone based on how good of a citizen yu are. Implemented in 2012 and will become mandatory for everyone in 2020. There's some misinfo and exaggerations about what this system actually is, but at its most insidious it will trawl your social media activity and lower your score for political dissidence and wrong-think, and best of all is that you are affected by the people you're associated with. If you're friends with a free thinker on china facebook it'll drag you down, so you need to cut ties.

The episode wasn't a mind blow or anything but I think what it depicts is valuable. As someone who keeps social media use to a bare minimum it didn't hit close to home but I've seen reddit posts claiming it was a real eye opener, people realizing how much value they place in likes, both in how much they get and what they think of people who get more or less, and re-thinking about the reddit upvote system.

A couple scenes stood out too, like the airport. When the guard gives her a social death sentence while maintaining a friendly smile.

Playtest I thought was just a fun if unchallenging hour, like a popcorn horror film. Once things start escalating it's remarkably tense despite fully knowing it's a simulation. Also the guy was Kurt Russel's son and kind of swoon worthy justsayin. There was a good bit of foreshadowing on a rewatch too - it starts with him being told to turn off his phone to prevent interference, there's multiple spiders scattered around, a character design for the guy that pops up is on a computer Cooper walks past, that kind of thing. All the game references were nice too I suppose, it was directed by the same guy who did 10 Cloverfield and that Portal short so he's a certified #gamer.

This is basically what I expected when they ordered 12 or 13 episodes for a series that so far has only three episodes per season, more light and easy stories in the bunch rather than all bleak all day. I guess I went in with rock bottom expectations but both of these episodes surpassed them, though they're not massively impressive on their own. I haven't had any desire to rewatch Nosedive.

I absolutely loved Shut Up and Dance though, and San Junipero is genuinely beautiful and completely different to anything the show has done before. That's more what I want from the rest of the season, the high episode count means they can take so much more risks and try new ideas.

Men Against Fire is similar to Nosedive in that its extremely obvious from the start how it's going to go, but still done quite well and makes an interesting point. Haven't seen the final episode yet since it's an hour and a half long.

Shit, Rick and Morty did the whole "simulation inside a simulation" thing better.

To be fair Rick and Morty does most things better than most shows.

Hell of a long way from something like the Christmas special, with the utterly terrifying ending, or White Bear, with the amazing twist.

White Christmas is still my favourite episode and totally underrated in general. The National Anthem would be my runner-up but San Junipero and Shut Up and Dance would be up there too.

At 10/31/16 07:16 PM, Auz wrote: Gremlins

That infamous "...and that's how I found out there is no Santa" monologue, though. So many ruined childhoods.

You should see Gremlins 2 as well, people who hate it don't know what they're talking about. It's an intentionally ridiculous parody of the entire concept of sequels.

Alien 3

I think it was Ebert who said Alien 3 is the best looking bad movie he's ever seen, that about sums it up.


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