Let's talk Movies...

Sepulchritude Forum: The Absinthe Forum Archives Thru July 2001: Topics Archived Thru Feb 2001:Let's talk Movies...
By Bjacques on Saturday, February 03, 2001 - 10:00 pm: Edit

My faves this year. Some are rentals and some I caught on TV.

Quills and Titus haven't arrived here (Amsterdam) yet, but I can probably rent them by now.

Vampyr. The Film museum showed a restored print with a recently unearthed (er...) French copy of the soundtrack. My favorite part is when the hero's dream self is buried alive. There's supposed to be an alternate version of the story--Blood and Roses, directed by Roger Vadim. I'm sure it's got that overripe decadent look common in late '60s art films, like the Poe trilogy (Vadim directed Metzengerstein in that one).

La Jetee (1962). Spare, half-hour story of time travel, told in still pictures. Even the remake, 12 Monkeys, was good.

The 6th Sense. Especially the ghost voices on tape. Brrr.

Three Kings (remember, the war ended around the Feast of the Epiphany). Smarter remake of "Kelly's Heroes."

The Virgin Suicides. Having gone to high school in that era, I was glad to see it done right.

Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels.

Shallow Grave. My favorite adaptation of The Pardoner's Tale.

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon

Herzog's Nosferatu. Messy, but beautifully shot and lovely old Dutch locations. I especially liked the scene in which Isabelle Adjani fights her way through a parade of pallbearers after the "plague" has hit the town.

High Fidelity. All my vinyl is 3000 miles away. Sigh.

Rock 'n' Roll Highschool. The geekgirl blows up the school without killing anybody, so there's no recuperation as with Heathers. Who could ask for more?

The Parallax View, especially the montage the Parallax Corporation shows Warren Beatty in order to see if he's Parallax material.

I still haven't seen Being John Malkovich, to my continuing shame, and now my VCR needs fixing.

By Chrysippvs on Saturday, February 03, 2001 - 08:34 pm: Edit

You are the all singing, all dancing, crap of the world....

By _Blackjack on Saturday, February 03, 2001 - 03:52 pm: Edit

Oh, back to movies:

I just saw "The Gift." My only real comment is: can we PLEASE stop letting Keanu Reeves be in otherwise good movies? He is so obviously not in the moment in every scene in this movie, it totally ruined the illusion of reality for me.

By _Blackjack on Saturday, February 03, 2001 - 03:49 pm: Edit

LH-

There aren't more effective ways of treating depression. ECT is more effective, and more immediate, than any form of pharmacotherapy. Yes, it is extreme, which is why they are working on things like rTMS. Candidates for ECT are usually those for whom repeated drug-therapy has failed, and those who are in immediate danger of suicide.

And our understanding of how antidepressants work is only slightly clearer than or understanding of ECT. We know how they effect neurotransmitter levels, but we don't know why, exactly, that relieves depression, or why they effect different patients differently. Psychopharmacology is still in its infancy, which is kinda scary for somebody who depends on it to function.

To my knowledge, ECT is not used to "sedate" anybody. First off, it won't do that. If anything, it does the opposite. It will often revive catatonic schizophrenics. Tho it can be used to relieve mania in bipolar patients, it's not a sedative. There are much more effective means to sedate people, like, say, giving them sedatives.

You say that no treatment should be used unless we understand its effects...well, that eliminates an awful lot of medical science. There is a huge amount of guesswork involved, especially in fields like psychiatry, neurology and endocrinology. If we are going to wait until we know everything before we start treating people there is going to be a lot of suffering.

ECT, if anything, has a longer track record than most of the drugs still commonly used in psychiatry. We don't know what 30 years of SSRI use will do to someone, because they haven't been around that long. We do have people who have had ECT, sometimes several times, and continued to live on for decades. We know that they sometimes suffer permanent memory loss. We know that the depression often relapses, and continues to be drug-resistant. But compared to other things we do to save people's lives, like, say, chemotherapy, it seems to be relatively benign.

By Pikkle on Saturday, February 03, 2001 - 03:23 pm: Edit

His name is Robert Paulson.

By Admin on Saturday, February 03, 2001 - 01:50 pm: Edit

And I know I have mentioned it before, but "I, CLAVDIVS" had a profound effect on me. Though made for the small screen, I consider it one of the most exquisite bits of drama ever filmed. Considering it is entirely shot in video, it has more drama, intrigue and superior acting than most high budget films made.

I first saw bits of it when I was very young when my parents watched it on PBS. When watching it later in my teens, it fueled the beginnings of my passions for history, drama, & intrigue. I've read the books a dozen times, and can watch the series once a year or more.

For those who haven't seen the plug, myself & Mordantia Bat annotated a marathon we indulged in:

The I, CLAVDIVS Drinking Game

By Admin on Saturday, February 03, 2001 - 01:38 pm: Edit

RHPS is a silly spoof, I didn't mean to suggest a sort of pedestal for it. But the imagery, and mostly the community, were a big part of my growing up process, as it was. But like most "groups" even that became oppressive and I spent my late teens and early 20's being embarrassed about my involvement and the rather geeky reputation it has. I'm a bit proud of it now, only because of the influence it had on me, blah blah blah.

The music is pretty terrible. It was written as a campy stage show and works much better in that environment. But I think it's still a lovely bit of satire, and Tim Curry is exquisite.

By Lordhobgoblin on Saturday, February 03, 2001 - 12:08 pm: Edit

Blackjack,

The problem with ECT is that nobody knows how or why it appears to work, or what other effects it has on the brain. There are safer chemical methods of controlling depression, where at least we know what's going on. ECT involves letting someone fuck with your brain without them knowing what's going on, not a good idea.

Also the way it is used on patients in psychiatric hospitals to sedate them is barbaric. No treatment should be used, (especially on such vunerable patients) unless we understand its effects.

By Don_Walsh on Saturday, February 03, 2001 - 10:45 am: Edit

I suggest you read the more credible book(s) on MK-Ultra, the Agency sponsored research program on 'mind control'. ECT was one of the main research avenues, and it was a real horros story. A lot of this work was done at Butner, but not all. The main book is called "The Search for the Manchurian Candidate" and was co-authored if I recall by Victor Marchetti, a high level former aide to CIA directors.

The thrust of MK-Ultra was concern over opposition (Soviet and Chinese) research into brainwashing as exemplified during the Korean War. The Agency wanted to anticipate possible drug and/or ECT techniques that might be used against us. So they gave consultant scientists and doctors carte blanche to play some very unethical, perhaps criminal games. Not the least of these were non-cnsensual LSD administrations, some at a brothel in San Francisco. At least one suicide is known to have resulted.

All in all a scary episode from a scary period.

I know what they were worried about and why they thought this needed to be done. Clearly the opposition was researching the same thing (Soviet spychiatry IS a horror story) but still, like a lot of things we have done, hindsight is 20/20 and unforgiving.

By _Blackjack on Saturday, February 03, 2001 - 09:54 am: Edit

Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is a very effective treatment for depression. It uses electrical current to generate an epileptic seizure in the patient, which, for reasons that are still unclear, alleviates depression. It is (and has been, since the 1950's) delivered under anesthesia with paralytic drugs given to the patient to prevent them from injuring themselves due to the convulsions. It had fairly severe side effects--primarily short-term memory loss and headaches--but is more than 80% effective and certainly preferable to suicide. I have been in the position of considering it myself.

It is NOT to be used as a punishment, as portrayed in OFOTCN, nor on anyone other than those suffering from severe depression and occasionally catatonic schizophrenics. Had it been used as portrayed, the doctors involved would have been guilty of criminal negligence, at least. I'm not saying things like that may not have happened; it was just not standard medical procedure.

The primary controversy surrounding ECT is not whether it is humane or effective--it is--but whether it is being over-used due to pressure from insurance companies who would rather pay fro a single procedure than years of treatment for chronic mental illness.

They are now testing a new therapy, called Trancranial Magnetic Stimulation, which uses powerful electromagnetic coils to stimulate microseizures in specific areas of the brain showing depressed electrical activity in PET scans. It is sort of a sniper to ECT's carpet bombing. It can be done on an outpatient basis, with very few side effects. Unfortunately, the latest trials have not been as promising as the initial studies.

Sorry for the rant. It's a subject close to my brain (he said, sitting 2 feet from a 10,000 lux full-spectrum lamp...)

By Anatomist1 on Saturday, February 03, 2001 - 09:26 am: Edit

Actually, I think they still use electroshock here, but on a voluntary basis, ususally outpatients, and with fewer sessions. I swear I heard an interview with someone who had it done on the radio recently.

I worked at UW Hospital medical records for years, and the only records I ever encountered that dealt with it was a microfilm from the 50's. It was spooky. A woman's family thought she wasn't well, and finally took her in when she sat out in the yard in January without a coat and nearly froze. They gave her over 30 "treatments" over the course of a couple weeks. The nurse wrote down some quotes and they were mostly things like "No! Stop please!" "Where is my family?" "Why are you doing this to me?" Her husband and kids didn't even come to visit during her stay, and the records gave no indication that they explained anything to her or used any cognitive therapy...

K.

By Artemis on Saturday, February 03, 2001 - 06:37 am: Edit

I didn't see The Rocky Horror Picture Show until I was over 30, so hormones had nothing to do with it. I never saw it in a theater either, so the audience participation wasn't a factor.

I like old mansions on a rainy night. Tim Curry was magnificent. Everything else was gravy.

There was a lot not to like about it, too. The music, excluding the theme song and the Time Warp, sucked then and sucks now. Musicals suck in general. Meatloaf was definitely expendable, on or off the movie.

By Don_Walsh on Saturday, February 03, 2001 - 03:45 am: Edit

The Sixth Sense: something only a fan of Bruce Willis could love. You'd do better with Bruce Wayne.

Hollywood brings in an allegedly talented Indian director, maybe because his renumeration expectations are lower and maybe because all the local talent is strung out on coke. The guy pulls a little perspective legerdemaine and thereby hangs the film.

Main problem is: Willis is supposed to be a wiz psychiatrist, but as a ghost he's lost both his logical apparatus and his instinctive empathy. He's clueless.

ROCKY HORROR: well, yeah, I guess you have to have been entering puberty to really be in sync with it. I was already too old. I did like some of the music. But hey, I'm from N.O. and kinky so transexual transvestite from Transylvania just struck me as 'slice of life.' And Meat Loaf was never a big idol for me.

I'm much happier with 'Betelgeuse' for example. Esp the cameo by Dick Cavett.

CUCKOOS NEST Read the book. Kesey is of course great (and that's coming from antidrug me.) Bear in mind that McMurphy was doing time for statuatory, and finagled himself into the loony bin to avoid jail per se. What you are looking at is the pre Reagan mental-institutional status quo in California, pretty scary stuff. BTW they no longer use EST in USA I think. Am I wrong?

By Midas on Saturday, February 03, 2001 - 02:07 am: Edit

I don't know if it's the same in the US, but here the call-back used in that moment of silence is

"Consti...
Consti...
Consti..."

-Robert.

"There's a light (over at the Frankenstein place)
There's a light...
Where do you keep your children?
...burning in the fireplace..."

By Artemis on Friday, February 02, 2001 - 10:47 am: Edit

Rocky Horror is worth watching just for the one scene where Dr. Frank N. Furter's red lips mouth the word:

"An-ti-ci-"

Others in the scene lean toward Dr. Frank, eyes wide, ears perked up in anticpation .....

"PAY-shun"!

I guess it helps if you love old cheap horror movies, too.

"Science fiction - double feature
Dr. X will
build a creature ..... "

By Marc on Friday, February 02, 2001 - 10:23 am: Edit

It's been many years since I saw HOUSEKEEPING.
I remember liking it very much. It was directed by Bill Forsyth who also directed two favorite films of mine, GREGORY'S GIRL and
LOCAL HERO.

kallisti,

I never "got" ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW.
When it was at it's peak of popularity, I was hanging at Max's and CBGB's. ROCKY HORROR seemed kind of old hat and corny. The music makes me cringe. But, it seems to have had a wondeful effect on you, and that's all that counts.

By Anatomist1 on Friday, February 02, 2001 - 09:06 am: Edit

duplicate

By Anatomist1 on Friday, February 02, 2001 - 09:06 am: Edit

I've mentioned it a few times, but HOUSEKEEPING was really a transformational experience for me. A woman I used to live with tried to get me to watch it for 2 years before I relented, and it took another 3 or 4 for it to fully sink in. It explores many of the same issues as NEST regarding relative sanity, but more gently. Christine Lahti's Aunt Sylvie is a hobo angel, and the whole movie conveys a quiet contentment and mystical,loving attention to detail that is difficult to describe. The story started to become even more interesting when I looked deeper, and also read the book. Marilynne Robinson (the author) is a Calvinist. Instead of thumping a bible, she has created a delicate masterpiece about wonder, solace, solitude, and the beauty of a carefully cultivated interior life. It didn't turn me into a Puritan, but it opened me up to new ideas, emotions, and the hidden value of an ancestral legacy that I previously thought held nothing for me.

K.

By Artemis on Friday, February 02, 2001 - 09:03 am: Edit

"If Jesus appeared on the streets of New York
today, penniless and barefoot, would he not be institutionalized?"

I have an "Underground" Comic, by one "Foolbert Sturgeon", as I remember, featuring the adventures of Jesus in the modern world.

Cop, having rousted Jesus from sleeping in the park: "Let me see some ID"!

Jesus: "What"?

By Admin on Friday, February 02, 2001 - 08:36 am: Edit

PUBERTY <== Insert Rocky Horror HERE

I feel it might seem a little trite to say that movie changed my life. But it did. My brother dragged me to see it when I was 13 and it was like a revelation.

A revelation in expression, in difference and it was the first time I ever felt SEX in anything other than a theoretical sense. Being a naturally shy and reticent person (don't laugh!) and especially so at that age, I still marvel that I had the guts at 13 to walk up one of the players, a 25 year old man in full drag, and say "Can I play?"

It was the first time I made friends. "One of us! One of us! Gooble, gobble!"

But one of the greatest legacies for me from joining up was that I had free run for the next four years of one of the greatest theaters ever. It wasn't a first run theater, they would play 2 to 4 different movies everyday and so many of them had a similar impact.

Harold & Maude, I think the term "black comedy" was coined in an effort to describe that film. Pink Flamingoes & Female Trouble (anything by John Waters) were astonishing and vital. All these films (including CUCKOO) and more reinforced the impetus for self expression and the rock n roll lifestyle. I think I was more influenced by the cinema at that age, than music.

By Petermarc on Friday, February 02, 2001 - 12:51 am: Edit

i always thought it was interesting that many down-syndrome cases were caused by too many chromosomes...is there something they know that we don't?

By Marc on Thursday, February 01, 2001 - 11:42 pm: Edit

I first saw ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOOS NEST when it was released in the 70's. It moved me deeply.
Jack Nicholson's portayal of free spirit McMurphy
was of the great performances in modern movies.
McMurphy was a wiseass who had wisdom, a rebel with a heart, a trickster out to subvert the established notions what constitutes being crazy and being sane. This movie spoke to me. I have always questioned the sanity of so-called "sane" people.
I have always thought that many so-called "crazy"
people may actually be, to a degree, enlightened.
In India there are "crazy" people who are considered to be divinely intoxicated, they are called masts.
They can barely operate in the world. They are in a state of constant rapture. They are often filthy, unable to talk or move. They communicate through gesture or gutteral sounds. In this country (USA) we'd discard them as nutjobs. In India they are revered.
If Jesus appeared on the streets of New York
today, penniless and barefoot, would he not be institutionalized?
How many brilliant, beautiful minds have been tossed into mental institutions not because they
are crazy, but because they are misunderstood
Of course, this is just one of many thoughts and feelings that ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOOS NEST
evokes in me. Like all great art, it's a film that has many facets and layers.

By Marc on Thursday, February 01, 2001 - 03:41 pm: Edit

For your consideration, a new film topic:

Which movie changed your life? A movie that had a profound effect upon you, changed your point of view, opened your mind etc.

Here's one of mine:
ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOOS NEST.

By Pikkle on Thursday, February 01, 2001 - 11:58 am: Edit

The Sixth Sense was a horribly contrived, gimmicky Hollywood hyped-up feel good flick... I really honestly couldn't stand it... it left that same stale taste in my mouth as say like 'Ghost.' Can I get a shredder with that cheese? Gimme any movie with Harvey Keitel any day... I wish he didn't get fired from 'Apocolypse Now.' That would have really been interesting...

By Absinthedrinker on Thursday, February 01, 2001 - 06:37 am: Edit

I just caught 'The Sixth Sense' on video. It really had me going and I didn't guess until the end. I'm so glad I hadn't read any spoilers.

Marc

Sopranos is The best ever. I'm going through serious withdrawal as the second series has just finished in the UK and we will have to wait until autumn for series three. Does anyone know whether they plan a film version?

By Tavis on Thursday, February 01, 2001 - 05:19 am: Edit

another couple of classic films:

Duel (Stephen Spielberg's first?)
Southern Comfort

By Admin on Sunday, January 28, 2001 - 11:19 am: Edit

Not just another spooky life after death drama!

THE GIFT

Ok, if you see any of the recent outpourings of crazy psychic pictures that we've been flooded with in the past two years, go see Billy Bob Thorton's latest "The Gift."

There's nothing spookier than a swamp, and boy is this swampy. Cypresses dripping with spanish moss is the order of the day.

The main character played by Blanchett is loosely based on Billy Bob's own mother, who is a small town fortune teller (or swamp witch, as I like to say). While the plot itself and some of the ancillary characters are not of the most complex, the dialog, acute human insight and the storytelling techniques used are exquisite. While a little over the top with the tongue in cheek Hitchcockian devices, there are a few scenes accomplished with the camera that completely blew me away for creep factor. Namely, and straaaangley, they somehow captured that ultimate creep factor in dreams when the person you are looking at somehow moves in a way that is not natural, or not found in nature or is so strange and fast, that it has me waking up in a sweat. I don't really know how to describe it, but Blair Witch did it just once at the very very end, which clinched the whole film as a freaker for me.

To me, seeing it done so well here, sinched up the whole film for me. And I could easily see this film again and again.

By Billynorm on Thursday, January 25, 2001 - 09:11 am: Edit

Marc,

I haven't seen many movies this past year, but here's my top ten anyway:
1. O BROTHER, WHERE ART THOU?
2. [see #1]
3. [see #1]
4. [see #1]
5. [see #1]
6. [see #1]
7. [see #1]
8. [see #1]
9. [see #1]
10. THE CELL

Pikkle,

"John Wayne was a fag!" Great line, great movie! Unfortunately, it might explain why the Duke evaded the draft in WW2. "Don't ask, don't tell, pony soldier!" Here's some unintentional humor from the Green Berets: http://users.aol.com/armySof1/Duke.html

By Marc on Thursday, January 25, 2001 - 03:06 am: Edit

start another thread for this computer jive. this is movie talk.

I just purchased the first season of THE SOPRANOS
on dvd. I'm enjoying it immensely. I dig they way they've brought the mafia into the "new age".
Wise guys on prozac. Very amusing.

By Imaldris on Wednesday, January 24, 2001 - 10:33 pm: Edit

Well Anatomist 1....I really wish I could get by on sheer "doggedness." Problem is, my computer crashes everytime I try to use the scanner. Matter of fact, computer crashes everytime I try to do something other than surf the net. And if I want to play an online game or watch a video...oops! There it goes again! I did buy Computers for Dummies which I will use when I get a better computer. I just cant wait!!!!!! So many cool things to do.But..a small part of me still wishes that "comma-eight-comma-one" were still part of tech language. I still get screwed up in my word processing program...everyonce in a while I find myself typing "run." (sigh)

By Anatomist1 on Wednesday, January 24, 2001 - 08:23 pm: Edit

I,

Don't worry. Learning about computers is mostly a matter of gumption: if you want something to happen badly enough, you will find a way. Most of the time, when I see someone who can't understand something about a computer, I see someone who doesn't trust themself, and isn't willing to put in much effort.

I used to be the "computer guy" at the office where I worked. I always thought it was funny because I didn't KNOW anything more than everyone else about computer problems, I was just the guy that was willing to sit there for 8 hours straight scouring the manual and trying everything I could think of. The way I see it, it's not so much a matter of whether scanning a photo is a worthwhile goal, it's about whether or not this is going to be the thing that defeats you, that makes you give up, turn tail and run.

What you need is what Larry McMurtry calls it "doggedness": it's what sent my ancestors out west in covered wagons to make farms and ranches on land where you'd be lucky to grow a cactus, and you'd be equally lucky to live through a night's sleep without being murdered by Commanche raiders. If you ain't got it, I'm not sure I can help you get it. It's best to just deal with the question of how badly you want it, and then set to work on figuring out a way to get it.

K.

By Imaldris on Tuesday, January 23, 2001 - 11:07 pm: Edit

anatomist 1...i posted a profile per your request but am unsure as to whether or not i did it right. (i'm rather new to the whole "computer revolution" having been taught on texas instruments and commodore 64s while in school.) i would scan a picture but...well...thats rather beyond me at the moment (even though i do own a scanner.) please please don't laugh at my poor tech-ignorant self!!!!

By Marc on Tuesday, January 23, 2001 - 01:21 am: Edit

Here's my top ten for the year 2000

ALMOST FAMOUS
DANCER IN THE DARK
JESUS' SON
CAST AWAY
GLADIATOR
POLA X
HUMANITE
ERIN BROKOVITCH
CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON
HIGH FIDELITY

Honorable mentions:
REQUIEM FOR A DREAM
ME, MYSELF AND IRENE
THE FILTH AND THE FURY
GIMME SHELTER (remastered, dolby digital)
SAVING GRACE
SPACE COWBOYS
GEORGE WASHINGTON
AMERICAN PSYCHO
BAMBOOZLED

Films I did not see that may have made my list
(if I were back in Manhattan, I would have seen them):

YI YI
THE WIND WILL CARRY US
A TIME FOR DRUNKEN HORSES
YOU CAN COUNT ON ME
O, BROTHER WHERE ART THOU

By _blackjack_ on Monday, January 22, 2001 - 06:21 pm: Edit

One of the charms of "Snatch" was Brad Pitt's portrayal of an unitelligible Irish gypsy. He sounded for all the world like my frind David's dad, whom David cannot even always understand. My hypothesis about Mr. Pitt continues to hold true...

By Pikkle on Monday, January 22, 2001 - 05:54 pm: Edit

"John Wayne was a fag."

By Tavis on Monday, January 22, 2001 - 07:56 am: Edit

Yep, 'My Name is Joe' is the Scottish film, one of the better UK films of recent years in my opinion.

I'm from the UK, so generally anything in a film/TV programme with a UK regional accent I can understand. These accents are pretty tame compared to what's really out there though. No doubt it's the same story everywhere.

By Artemis on Monday, January 22, 2001 - 07:25 am: Edit

Another movie I had to strain to understand, even though it's in English: "Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels". Very funny, very brutal, excellent movie.

By Artemis on Monday, January 22, 2001 - 07:22 am: Edit

"My Name is Joe"

Is that about the Scottish guy who coaches the local soccer team? It had subtitles when I saw it on satellite TV, even though it's in English!!
Very good movie, but I've never seen the ending, just parts of it.

By Tavis on Monday, January 22, 2001 - 07:10 am: Edit

"I can't imagine a less happy ending than that of "Lolita". No compromise in that movie either. Straight dose of reality.
Open up and say "AH". "

'My Name is Joe' has a hopeless and tragic ending, check that one out if you're into depression.

By Artemis on Monday, January 22, 2001 - 07:07 am: Edit

"Hey, if Harry Dean Stanton and Mickey Rourke
are in it, I'm all for, regardless of the plot."

Repo Man has Harry AND a plot. Produced by Mike Nesmith, ex-Monkee. A masterpiece.

Harry Dean: "Look at them fuckin' assholes. Ordinary people. I hate 'em".
One of my favorite movie lines of all time.

By Artemis on Monday, January 22, 2001 - 07:04 am: Edit

I can't imagine a less happy ending than that of "Lolita". No compromise in that movie either. Straight dose of reality. Open up and say "AH".

By Pikkle on Monday, January 22, 2001 - 05:39 am: Edit

Hey, if Harry Dean Stanton and Mickey Rourke
are in it, I'm all for, regardless of the plot.

By Marc on Monday, January 22, 2001 - 01:07 am: Edit

THE PLEDGE directed by Sean Penn. Starring Jack Nicholson.

A meditation on obsession, salvation and futility, THE PLEDGE is a dark and unsettling
work of art. Sean Penn has made a gutsy and uncompromising film. Nicholson's performance is one of his best in years. Almost a companion piece to his turn in CHINATOWN. PLEDGE also features small, but memorable, performances by Harry Dean Stanton, Sam Shepard and Mickey Rourke.
Nicholson is a recently retired cop on the trail of a psychopath who rapes and kills young girls. But, the essence of the film deals with Nicholson's need to redeem himself by capturing the murderer. THE PLEDGE is a psychological drama
that works it's way to one of the most disturbing and hopeless endings in the history of modern cinema. I admire Penn for making such a gutsy and uncompromising film. The audience I saw it with
hated it. Instead of escapism, they were delivered
art. They couldn't deal with it.

By Marc on Sunday, January 21, 2001 - 08:01 pm: Edit

anatomist,

DANCER IN THE DARK
is going to be on my top ten best of 2000.
It wasn't released in 1999.

By the way, I saw the Sean Penn directed film
THE PLEDGE today. It's very good. I'll post a review soon.

By Pikkle on Sunday, January 21, 2001 - 06:20 pm: Edit

'Shakes the Clown' just came out on DVD...
required viewing for any absinthe drinker.

By Artemis on Sunday, January 21, 2001 - 05:12 pm: Edit

American Beauty - YES! The way the guy describes his fascination with the trash (was it a paper bag?) dancing on the wind.

Lolita - YES! Oh, man, that nymphet. YES! I understand perfectly why our shattered protaganist shot that bastard full of holes at the end. How could he do any less?

Shakespeare in Love - YES! Elizabethan theater in-jokes and double entendres:

"The play must ...."

"Go on!"

Good list, Kallisti

By Anatomist1 on Sunday, January 21, 2001 - 05:04 pm: Edit

Oh, and CHICKEN RUN! CHICKEN RUN was astonishing.

K.

By Anatomist1 on Sunday, January 21, 2001 - 05:02 pm: Edit

Marc,

Not DANCER IN THE DARK?

I definitely don't see enough movies in the theaters to do a top ten. I would have to keep a notebook to remember all the movies I see on Cable and VCR. I tried it for a while, but I'm just not anal-retentive enough.

One that I would pick that I doubt anyone else would is ME, MYSELF, I with Rachel Griffiths.

K.

By Admin on Sunday, January 21, 2001 - 03:21 pm: Edit

I only see a small handful of movies a year in the theater, and don't have a local video store. So it's theater or cable for me. But here's some faves from the past couple years:

In Random Order:


South Park, Election & Topsy Turvy all get honorable mention

By Artemis on Sunday, January 21, 2001 - 02:34 pm: Edit

For what it's worth, I read the Blair Witch website up and down and top to bottom before seeing the movie. I was very entertained by the material on the website and impressed with the overall multimedia effort. But the movie itself was a letdown.

By _blackjack_ on Sunday, January 21, 2001 - 01:26 pm: Edit

Blair Witch definitely seems to be a love it or hate it sort of thing. The people who enjoyed it most seem to be the people who had gotten into all the background material from the website and the SciFi channel special. Tho it stands on its own merits, its real genius is how it was a facet of a larger multimedia experience.

I haven't seen the sequel, but I hear bad things from both fans and haters of the original.

By _blackjack_ on Sunday, January 21, 2001 - 01:13 pm: Edit

I'd like to drop Dogma from my list and replace it with SLC Punk. I somehow thought it came out in '98, but I was wrong...

By Artemis on Sunday, January 21, 2001 - 07:13 am: Edit

"I get the impression that my fellow forumites are not avid moviegoers. Have you all seen enough films released this year to do a top ten list?"

I doubt many more than ten films have *been* released this year (2001). Gotcha.
I don't go to movie houses, so I have to wait for movies to come out on satellite TV, or in the video store.
I don't believe in top ten lists.
But I do love really good movies and really bad movies.

I did see "Repo Man" (again) the other night, and it's still one of the best movies of all time.

A really bad movie that's good is "Johnny Guitar" - Joan Crawford is scarier than any alien. The ghastly unnatural technicolor oozing from the screen is amazing all by itself. And how could a movie go wrong with guys named "Johnny Guitar" and "The Dancin' Kid" in it?

"Big Momma's House" - Martin Lawrence is usually so over the top he's painful to look at, but this is a FUNNY movie.

To take exception to a couple I've seen listed:

"Blair Witch Project" - I made an exception to my "no theaters" policy for that one. What an unmitigated piece of shit. About as scary as a cold biscuit. Several morons running around in the woods lost, bitching at each other. This movie should have been sponsored by Absente for the nothing-but-hype award.

"Eyes Wide Shut" - nothing to recommend it other than the Golden Dawn-style ritual scene, but it's worth seeing for that alone.

By _blackjack_ on Sunday, January 21, 2001 - 02:29 am: Edit

Fight Club
Magnolia
Bringing Out the Dead
American Beauty
The Blair Witch Project
Being John Malkovich
South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut (I'm a sucker for a good musical...)
Three Kings
Run, Lola, Run
Dogma

The Straight Story, The Dreamlife Of Angels and
All About My Mother, I haven't seen, but plan to. Rushmore and Election both fall into the same category: they were fun, but I didn't quite see why they got the raves they did. Topsy-Turvey, somehow, despite being a huge Gilbert and Sullivan fan, I've only caught half of. It was a great half.

I just saw Man in the Moon last night, and I haven't quite digested it. I suspect I enjoyed it more than most because, just when they got to the part where Andy was insisting they screw with the verical hold on his TV special, the DVD started to skip. I sat there a solid five minutes laughing, thinking it was part of the movie.

By Marc on Sunday, January 21, 2001 - 01:45 am: Edit

Marc's 1999 top ten. In random order.

Fight Club
Eye's Wide Shut
American Beauty
The Straight Story
The Dreamlife Of Angels
Magnolia
All About My Mother
Topsy Turvy
Rushmore
Election

By Marc on Sunday, January 21, 2001 - 01:25 am: Edit

blackjack,

I'll show you mine if you show me yours. What's your 1999 top ten?

By _blackjack_ on Sunday, January 21, 2001 - 12:40 am: Edit

I usually watch movies on DVD so most of the movies I watched in 2000 were from 1999. I've got a 1999 Top 10, but my 200 Top ten is still waiting for some stuff to be released that I missed in theaters...

By Marc on Saturday, January 20, 2001 - 11:25 pm: Edit

I get the impression that my fellow forumites
are not avid moviegoers. Have you all seen enough films released this year to do a top ten list?

By Chrysippvs on Saturday, January 20, 2001 - 12:11 pm: Edit

Go see Snatch too...saw it last night. Hillarious. The opening scene is hillarious, I was weeping in tears...listen closely to the music being played...

By Pikkle on Saturday, January 20, 2001 - 07:35 am: Edit

The only part of Schindler's List that scared
me was the last ten minutes.

By Thegreenimp on Friday, January 19, 2001 - 11:47 pm: Edit

To add to the Scariest theme and Silent film theme, I saw the orignal Nosferatu when I was quite young, and gave me the creeps.....I did think it was great, and I feel silent films were a great medium for horror. The lack of sound really pulls you into the film.
Kallisti, I heard the opening sequence of Shadow of the Vampire was incredible, it's on my list to see.
Jay

By Thegreenimp on Friday, January 19, 2001 - 11:30 pm: Edit

Battle Field Earth.....it only needs to be stuffed with dressing, and served on Thanksgiving...or a Turkey, without the drumsticks....Groan!
Jay

By Bob_chong on Friday, January 19, 2001 - 10:24 pm: Edit

Primary Colors.

J/K. I thought you'd like that.

Scariest might be Deliverance. Realistic = scary, IMO. Add Schindler's List for that reason. Scared the hell out of me.

But talking typical scary fare, I've always been partial to the Shining. Not that it's the scariest, but it's one of the most entertaining scary movies I've seen.

BC

By Marc on Friday, January 19, 2001 - 10:00 pm: Edit

Topic: What's the scariest movie you've ever seen?

Discuss...

By Marc on Friday, January 19, 2001 - 09:58 pm: Edit

BATTLEFIELD EARTH.

John Travolta, welcome back to the "where are they now?" file. Mickey Rourke and Wynona Ryder
are waiting to greet you.

Travolta has used up whatever good will he earned via PULP FICTION and GET SHORTY. BATTLEFIELD EARTH
is the worst kind of mega-bomb, one that isn't bad enough to be good. Unlike SHOWGIRLS, BATTLEFIELD has no camp value. It's boring.

By Malhomme on Friday, January 19, 2001 - 12:13 pm: Edit

Gattica
The helical staircase, the G-A-T-C that comprise the name of GATTiCA, astronauts boarding the starships through a life-sized vasdeferens, then the social/political commentary.... Oh, man! is this my favorite movie. I really related having been discreminated against throughout my life for reasons just as arbitrary. There's just too much in the movie to go into. The things I pointed out are corny, but represent a significant achievement in film making.

mal

By Tavis on Friday, January 19, 2001 - 07:43 am: Edit

gahh! Of course I was forgetting one of the most brutal & funny films I've seen - Happiness. What a classic that film is. So harrowing and yet so funny.

By Anatomist1 on Wednesday, January 17, 2001 - 02:28 pm: Edit

VIRGIN SUICIDES was very good, but it didn't rock my world. I would've bet a million dollars that the voiceover was done by David Duchovny... until I saw the credits.

Speaking of Duchovny, I thought PLAYING GOD was an excellent movie. Tim Hutton played a very memorable villain, and the whole premise had a certain freshness to it.

If we're listing our favorite movies ever, I have to give top billing to HOUSEKEEPING by Bill Forsythe. I made a tribute page: http://members.home.net/anatomica/housekeeping.htm

Good luck on getting it to load this afternoon. My server is sucking wind today.

K.

By Billynorm on Wednesday, January 17, 2001 - 11:10 am: Edit

I like anything by the Coen Brothers.

I used to like David Lynch. THE STRAIGHT STORY is good, but I thought the dialogue was a bit stilted. And I wish he'd ditch that "center line on the highway" shot that he's used in every film from BLUE VELVET on!

I want to see STATE AND MAIN and SHADOW OF A VAMPIRE, but I bet I won't get to see them until they come out on DVD, mostly because of where I live (Lincoln NE - 57 theaters, ain't nothin' playin'. I had to drive to Omaha to see O BROTHER, WHERE ART THOU?[!])

By Melinelly on Wednesday, January 17, 2001 - 04:07 am: Edit

on the topic of Quentin Tarantino, Pulp Fiction, Willem DaFoe, and justice...

i have to reiterate the following movie i mentioned:

BOONDOCK SAINTS

there is a scene depicting the bringing of justice similar to what perruche wanted us to imagine happening to Q.T. in fact, there are many many scenes that make you say "damn! this is what pulp fiction should have been..." etc.

this movie was not released in the US except for a very limited showing at festivals in NY and LA. it was released in germany and several other european countries. it was then released on video here in the states, but ONLY to Blockbuster. i got my copy in their previously viewed bin for like 5 bucks. you can find copies on eBay sometimes.

go out and find this movie and watch it! if for anything else, to see WILLEM DAFOE IN DRAG!

***GRIN***

By Admin on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 03:21 pm: Edit

One of the only movies that I've managed to see in the theater this past year that moooooved me was "Virgin Suicides." From what I can gather, its a love or hate it kind of film, but I found it sublime and intoxicating. In that slo-mo, don't ever want it to end kind of way. And the soundtrack by Air (not normally my cup o tea) is hypnotizing. It has the same visual feel to it that "carrie" does which is remarkable considering the 25 year lapse.

Heh, Morrigan, you dunna have to excuse Sleepy Hollow to me, with a tag line with "Heads will Roll" you know I had to be there opening night. It is certainly one of the most beautifully produced films I've seen, even among Burton's wonderful track record. Tho the storyline runs a little shallow for my tastes, its definately among my favorites.

By Morriganlefey on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 02:55 pm: Edit

Oh oh oh! Kallisti! You beat me to "Shadow" - I haven't seen it yet (*wringing my hands in a sinister manner.."soon...soooonnn!"*) Your review makes me salivate all the more to see it!!

Ang Lee fans (or those that liked "Crouching Tiger") rent Lee's "The Ice Storm". I sat there stunned for about an hour afterward trying to unravel my gnawed emotions to determine if I liked it. (I determined I did, and then some.)

In reading through this post, I wish I could contribute my Top 10 List, but I (literally!) get a headache just thinking about it. So much cinematic brilliance, so little time.

I do agree with Marc on 2 things though - "Almost Famous" was great, and "Velvet Goldmine" was SPLENDIDLY costumed (I, too, am a costume-whore - I even loved "Sleepy Hollow" ACK!) but insipidly-written.

Oh, and did anyone else find Christian Bale's 3-way-porn play by play to Phil Collin's "Susudio" in "American Psycho" just deeee-liteful?!?!

- Morrigan

By Head_prosthesis on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 01:35 pm: Edit

FIGHT CLUB... It's a beautiful love story

By Martin on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 11:36 am: Edit

Okay, I'm sorry. I finally got to see Fight Club again. This time I was sober and didn't black out before the end. I take back my previous opinion that the ending sucked. The 'twist' towards the end (which I won't give away, because its definately worth seeing) makes to movie finally make sense. Yes, this is an excellent movie.

It seems the only Fincher movie I hate is Seven, all the others (I've seen) are masterpieces.

My only complaint about Fight Club is that it comes off at first like it could be a really good story about anarchistic values, but it really doesn't turn out that way... too bad.

-Martin

By Admin on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 09:14 am: Edit

Ah!!! I saw "Shadow of the Vampire" yesterday, and I have to say to anyone interested in silent film in general (like me), and Nosferatu in particular (like me!) it is a must must must!

Its surprisingly fast paced. And while some of the plot machinations are far fetched, its handled in a witty and delightful way. Willem Defoe is brilliant, with a capital FUCKIN'. If you didn't know it was him underneath the scowling exterior you never would have guessed. He's got every gesture down and obviously is having fun with the role. John Malkovich is the straight man victim of his own plot. And is a wonderfully high camp hysterical director. Umm, who else ... oooo, nice to see Eddie Izzard, he needs to act more! And Cary Elwes as perky photographer with handy drug lore on the tip of his tongue (tho, hello, you don't shoot LAUDANUM) and Catherine McCormick is stunning as german theatre ingenue.

The wit is vibrant and clever, art direction is simple yet richly produced. It is an ode to silent film and the splicing of what is set up with what the camera shoots is absolutely lovely, and conveys much of the artistry that went into some of the earliest films.

This was a film made after my own heart.

By Anatomist1 on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 05:26 am: Edit

Hey Imaldris. Please make yourself a profile. Who is that masked person?

K.

By Imaldris on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 04:55 am: Edit

Well said Anatomist 1!

By Marc on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 04:40 am: Edit

Oliver Stone is a hypocrite. He uses MTV-style video techniques and violence to condemn pop culture's use of violence. But, the only thing that gives NBKs energy is the MTV editing and the violence. After Any Given Sunday and U-Turn, it's clear that Stone likes violence.

By the way, we are discussing violence in film at the New York Times Film Forum.
forums.nytimes.com

Join us. It's a good hang.

By Black_rabbit on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 04:26 am: Edit

Anatomist, my reaction is probably atypical just because I try to see things like that from as many perspectives as possible (when I watch a movie, I sometimes simultaneoulsy root for the bad guys, the good guys, and everyone and no-one.) I like to do that rather than just be led by the film most of the time.

So I laughed at the brain cleaing up thing. I also felt horror. But, given the we-are-so-cool-and-ironic tone of the film, you are probably right about most people's reactions. I hope Tarantino was doing then what was done in Natural Born Killers:

One of my favorite movie memories was Natural Born Killers- there is a scene, set up like a sitcom. Rodney Dangerfield plays the dad, and Mallory Knox (the mass murderer chick) is his daughter. He is cracking cheesy-but-funny one liners, and the audience in the theater with me is yukking it up along to the laugh track. Then the jokes start to get horrible, pedophilic, but the laugh track keeps right up, and so does the audience in the theater. They were so conditioned from their years of TV watching they kept right on laughing at these terrible things because the laugh track did. Their slowly building confusion and gradually more hesitant chuckles sent me into long bouts of hysterical, sinister laughter- it took one guy in front of me a good long time to realize this wasn't funny, and say 'jesus that's sick!' Then he looked at me with disgust (I guess he thought I was laughing at the screen, so the Look of Moral Outrage(tm) he turned on me made me lose it all over again. He shook his head sadly and turned away.)

I am laughing right now just thinking about that. tee hee!

By Marc on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 04:06 am: Edit

anatomist,

I see your point about p.c.


blackjack,

Grave Of The Fireflies is indeed a beautiful, heartbreaking movie.

By Pikkle on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 04:04 am: Edit

I thought Resevoir Dogs was kind of
entertaining... at least it was something
different at the time.

By _blackjack_ on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 03:29 am: Edit

Godzilla 2000 paled in comparison to Godzilla vs. Destroyah (1995), the last of Heisei Godzilla films. GvD drew strongly on the themes of the original, 1954 film, had strong character development, pathos, and MUCH better giant monster rasslin. It is a shame that G2K was the first Godzilla film to get a big-screen release in the US since the HORRIBLE butcher job they did while translating Godzilla 1985, because several of the Heisei films (1984-1995) were really quality films.

By _blackjack_ on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 03:20 am: Edit

In Pulp Fiction, at least (which, I suspect, was all Terantino has to offer), there is a strong moral undercurrent to the violence. It is a story about redemption. For the most part, the people who have horrible things happen to them, deserve it, and have specifically chosen their path and rejected chances to redeem themselves.

I'll admit that 99% of the people who saw Pulp Fiction missed that entirely, and appreciated the movie for entirely the wrong reasons, but that doesn't mean it wasn't there. Remember, there were people who thought Trainspotting made heroin look cool and who joined the marines after seeing Full Metal Jacket...

By Joshua on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 02:56 am: Edit

looking down in the post ive noticed a veiw rocky fans,vack in the day i used to be eddie,it was defintly great fun,our theater was a nice old one from the 30's i think,it even had a stage in front of the screen.it made for some good times.
since im late to the movie thread,my favorite movies are as follows:
clockwork orange-my absolute favorite,wish it ended like the book though.
taxi driver
easy rider
natural born killers-its fun for lashings of the old ultra violence.
any old hercules movies.
romper stomper
godfather
defintly planet of the apes-get your paws off me,you damn dirty ape!! gotta love that line

By Anatomist1 on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 02:40 am: Edit

I seriously doubt Tarantino is concerned with anyone's moral welfare... at least not from what I've seen. Even though you reacted that way, Rabbit, I don't think your reaction was typical.

Also, Marc, I think you misunderstand the nature of my objection to PC. I don't know what you think narrow-mindedness is either. If it is having a strong opinion about something, arguing for it, and rejecting alternatives, then I guess that's me. My idea of narrow-mindedness includes the additional condition of not being willing to consider alternatives... just because I reject an alternative opinion doesn't mean I haven't or won't consider it.

My objection to PC is not that they are opinionated or narrow-minded, it is that they use dishonest means to try and force consensus in their favor -- trying to pass rules and laws to prohibit certain kinds of thinking/expression, trying to replace common words with specialized, ideology-packed replacements, etc... I'm not suggesting people be prohibited from producing or watching any movies, and I'm not underhandedly rigging the debate in my favor. I'm criticizing them through ordinary rhetorical means. I fail to see the connection.

K.

By Anatomist1 on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 01:00 am: Edit

Sorry Marc, but I've heard that line of argument before -- actually Tarantino himself has used it. I don't buy it. I see a difference between movies like Bonnie and Clyde, a Clockwork Orange, or the Deer Hunter and Woo/Tarantino stuff. In the former, the violence is not played for the sake of getting a good laugh and a hardon at the victims expense, or rather indifference to the victim. It is used in the context of a story about humans and about the consequences and meaning of the violence in their lives. It's sensitization vs. desensitisation.

I would put Tarantino's violence more in the same category with Schwartzenegger movies, despite his other talents as a director, except that the violence is even more in your face, and the attitude of smarmy irony is multiplied. I dispute the notion that art is self-indulgence, and that tacking the word 'artist' after your name gives you carte blanche to do any irresponsible thing you please with immunity from criticism. I think any art that makes people more callous, cynical, and sheep-like in their everyday lives needs to be criticized. What I find most disturbing about the preponderance of gleeful, ironic violence in movies and TV is that while people get off on it vicariously, they seem to be getting more frightened of every trifling non-conformity in reality. Lord help the person who shows up to work one day with their head shaved, or talks in weird and unpredictable ways -- plenty of Tarantino fans will be terrified. (I know this 'cause I used to work in an office).

On the other hand, I have enjoyed some movies that my diatribe would seem to condemn, like GROSSE POINTE BLANK, or COMEDY OF TERRORS. I'm not sure why. Maybe it's because they seem to have heart where the others only seem to have hip aloofness.

K.

By Black_rabbit on Tuesday, January 16, 2001 - 12:51 am: Edit

I think Tarantino was putting the violence in the contexts he used (joking around with a friend, then lets go kill these guys, or playing some cheerful music during a torture scene)to re-sensitize us. There is a 'my god, that's terrible' moment when you realize these two nice, witty fellows are arguing about who cleans up the brains.

And to point out how absurdly violence is used in many movies- an over the top, exaggerated Charles Bronson or Dirty Harry, with their snappy one-liners during a bit of the old ultra violence.

Saw Godzilla 2000 last night. Wasn't what it could have been (bad dubbing, and not enough Japanese people fleeing in terror, some poor filming that took away the sense of scale) but worth a look if you dig Godzilla. I only wish Matthew Broderick had been in that office building when it was vaporized.

For those of you who dig Anime, check out:

the Venus Wars (subtitled only- they actually managed to completely alter all the characters with their crappy ass dubbing)
Mermaids Scar (series)
Vampire Princess Miyu (series)
Grave of the Fireflies. One of the saddest and best movies I've seen (and those of you who don't dig anime should check it out. No superheroes, exploding heads, or nine hundred foot demon shlongs, just a good story.)

Street Fight by Ralph Bakshi (also known by it's original title, Coonskin.) If you can find it- it is controversial enough that it was banned quite a few places. It is an animated and unflinching look at racism and the Big American Lie, with Scatman Cruthers, Barry White and some other dudes I can't remember (part of it is live, part animated.)

By Marc on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 05:19 pm: Edit

anatomist,

I love ya babe, but, man you need to lighten up.
Tarantino is an artist, just like you, and within
that context anything goes. Violence in art goes back to cave drawings. Tarantino ain't the first film maker to use violence, editing, jump cuts, slo-mo etc. to jolt his audiences. Checkout the Keystone Kops, Harry Langdon and The Three Stooges. Or on the more serious tip, Sam Peckinpah, Hitchcock, Sam Fuller, Tod Browning,
William Castle, Roger Corman, Stanley Kubrick
(Clockwork Orange!), Martin Scorsese, John Woo...I could go on. Pulp Fiction and Reservoir Dogs may be glorified b-movies, but they are more accomplished than the work of most a-list directors. There is no doubt Pulp Fiction uses violence to tittilate. But, so did King Kong, Psycho, The Wild Bunch etc. Film is the perfect medium to replicate the thrill of danger. By the skillful use of editing, camera movement and music, a good director can transform a scene of violence into a work of visceral art. John Woo is a perfect example. Woo's films Hardboiled and The Killer are non-stop violence. The violence is so unrelenting and over-the-top it veers away from any sort of literalness into the realm of the fantastic. Peckinpah used slow motion to depict violence as a sort of perverse dance. Violence in the cinema is as old as cinema itself. They are perfect for each other. 24 frames per second cut, sliced and sped up creates rhythms that simulate the abruptness and jaggedness of a violent act. Some of the first recorded scenes on film were violent ones, a train crash, buildings exploding, fist fights. Tarantino does not celebrate violence, he celebrates violence in cinema. He recognizes the visceral pleasures to be derived from a skillfully directed shoot-em-up.

Considering your position on p.c., I am surprised by your narrowminded approach to violence in film.

By Chrysippvs on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 03:44 pm: Edit

I am not a big fan of Eastern thought....even when studying the martial arts I only kept a few aspects of the Budo ideology. I stuck mostly with the Stoics (300's bc) and the Spartans, and combined these thoughts. Zen to much reeks of Plontius and the like...I am a hardline monist, although not a materialist. Even take a look at my pseudo, chrysippus (with a v for a more latin feel), the real founder of the Stoic school...wrote over 700 books, a poet, artist, engineer, I think if Alexandria would have not been burnt Aristotle would have taken the back burner. I am one going to publish translations of his works from Attic Greek...although Attic Greek is horrid to learn..God Bless Koine..

By Anatomist1 on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 02:26 pm: Edit

PV,

I'm glad that someone else sees Tarantino as a harbinger of doom for civilization. I see such a falseness and dichotomy in finding horrendous acts of cruelty and violence funny and amusing in a vicarious context... especially when people seem to be receding into greater paranoia and conservatism in their real lives. It's like some convoluted feedback loop where greater desensitization in the aloof arena of entertainment feeds a greater need for conformity and blandness in everyday life. I think the stimulation cocktail of violence+sex+humor is an unprecedented disease of civilization. Some point in the cultural drive toward wilder irony and hipness will be seen by alien archaeologists as the final step of human specialization that led to our extinction.

K.

By Anatomist1 on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 02:13 pm: Edit

Chrysippis,

You should take that supposed 'inability' to undo your previous learnings and cherish it. I long for the days when I was starting Aikido. I just told myself: "Look. You don't know a damn thing about this, and there's no reason why you should." I gave myself complete permission to be ignorant and inept: it was a feeling of breezy freedom, and I learned very quickly. In Zen parlance they call it MuShin, or beginner's mind. Since then, my head has been clogged up with information and egoistic concerns, and I haven't been able to recapture that freshness. I hope to go there again when I study a new art.

K.

By Corsetgirl on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 01:47 pm: Edit

Imaldris, I don't mind that Jodie foster isn't coming back :) but I'm mad as Hell that they've changed the ending. People didn't think the ending was cuddly enough, I however felt that the book ended the way it needed to. I'm still going to the theatre feb 9th right after work.

By Perruche_verte on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 01:45 pm: Edit

Just once today, visualize something horrible happening to Quentin Tarantino.

Something along the lines of what happens to a character in one of his movies, but with a stronger and more realistic sense of justice.

Maybe something involving him killed while trussed into a 69 position with a film exec, so they both die biting each other's cocks off.

I got a superficial thrill from his films, but it died pretty quickly and I began to realize that what I was looking at really was the irresponsible and artless depiction of violence.

Gary Groth wrote a great essay on exactly what's wrong with Tarantino. It was published in the Baffler, and is probably online somewhere.

By Anatomist1 on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 01:28 pm: Edit

Hey! I posted this film thread!

Martial arts is sort of a tabula rasa. It pervades all cultures and all historical periods. It seems to be a basic thing about being human. Sometimes it's about macho bullshit, sometimes nothing of the kind. For a bunch of Tarantino and FIGHT CLUB-loving vicarious sadists, I find it strange that anyone would be hollering 'macho bullshit'. My point all along has been that violence is horrible and anything but glamorous, and I eschew movies that make it into a fun joke.

Speaking of martial arts IN films, I just saw CROUCHING TIGER. I was impressed. Occasionally, the gravity-defiance stuff was a little much, but overall I thought it was a beautiful and well-executed movie. Mr. Fat was definitely an impressive presence, and I liked the way he made his technique look sparer and more efficient than the other players.

K.

By Chrysippvs on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 01:13 pm: Edit

The Gracies are hardcore...great groundwork. I wanted to look into Muay Thai (If I come that way we have to go see some fights!). I thought about Thai, but after Kendo the body is so robotic it is hard to re-adapt...learned this when I looked into fencing.

By Marc on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 01:07 pm: Edit

Mamet's new film, STATE AND MAIN, is supposed to be a light comedy.

By Marc on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 01:05 pm: Edit

I know that martial arts are not about "fighting".
I know they are fundamentally about being mentally focused and emotionally centered.
I respect you folks for having the discipline to study these skills. But, please start another
thread. I was happy to see kallisti post a film thread.

Goddamned short attention spans.

By Anatomist1 on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 01:01 pm: Edit

Paranoia fest: first, THE SPANISH PRISONER by David Mamet. I made it a double feature with THE ARRIVAL, also paranoid to the gills. That Mamet... HOUSE OF GAMES, HOMICIDE, and PRISONER are likely the three most paranoid movies I've ever seen. I don't know how that guy sleeps.

K.

By Marc on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 12:58 pm: Edit

Why is it that so many of these threads, no matter what the subject, veers into discussions about fighting or some such macho shit? What's with you guys? You're either fighting with each other or yakking about fighting. Shit, do you think you could stay on topic? Or have you already exhausted your knowledge of film?

By Anatomist1 on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 12:55 pm: Edit

I trained in Katori Shinto Ryu Kenjutsu/Iajutsu for about a year, then went to Aikido for about 5. I've also dabbled in Tai Chi, Boxing, and Gracie Jujutsu. The ancient kenjutsu kata became too rigid and too memorization-intensive for me. Aikido is beautiful, and taught me many things that I never suspected when I started. Aside from all the more abstract stuff, having the ability to fall down harmlessly built reflexively into one's body is probably a more valuable self-preservation skill than kicking ass. I became disenchanted with my school, because there was too much talk and not enough action. Also, the whole testing/rank scene becomes annoying.

In general, I didn't discover how truly amazing my aptitude for learning neuro-muscular coordinative skills was until I started sculpting. Sculpting is a venue with nothing but tools, hands, materials, and the laws of physics. In a situation where I can trust my own decisions and intuition and set up a direct feedback loop with my own experience, I found that I could learn so fast that it was really not worth trying to analyze... best to just shut up and do it. I say this not necessarily to brag on myself, as I tend to believe that everyone could learn like this if they found the appropriate activity and opportunity. I'm lucky enough to have found mine, but unlucky in that art is a venue where craftsmanship/skill and vigor don't necessarily pay the bills. Anyway, the fallout is that I realized that Aikido was way too conservative for me -- far too based upon arguments from authority.

Right now I'm taking a few months just to focus on yoga and body conditioning. Once I'm to a stable place, I will go with an art that emphasizes self-learning from a more realistic training experience -- most likely Muay Thai or Gracie Jujutsu.

K.

By Chrysippvs on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 12:19 pm: Edit

all Kendo is in the end is reps. I probably have done over a million over-head strikes, when in reality you never-ever use that attack...

By Black_rabbit on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 12:13 pm: Edit

We have a Kenjitsu school around here in which the sensei makes you buy a sword- from japan, with written history-to train with (so it still has to be in good working order.) Most of those cost a good bit.

He also teaches another class, where the students are permitted to use practice swords (boken)instead of $3000 pieces of sharpend steel. He told my friend 'dont worry about getting it right. Just do the reps!'

Riiight. Teach yourself to do it the wrong way instinctively. Good idea. He also told my friend he was ready (though he had crappy form) for his belt test. His expensive, try-again-later-at-the-same-cost belt test.

Burns my muffins, that does. Of course, I understand the fellow has to make a living, but jeeze! I much prefer a class the teacher is giving because he wants to share his knowledge and help others learn. We used to kind of ignore the lack of payment for a 12yr old girl in our Matsubayashi-Ryu class, cause she was poor and it was doing her a world of good. Of course, my sensei never did manage a living at it, and eventually joined the airforce- bye bye dojo. But I think that was owing more to the overproliferation of martial arts schools around here, and the fact that it isn't a flashy form, so it doesn't look as cool to the untrained eye as Tae Kwan Do.

By Chrysippvs on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 11:49 am: Edit

I agree Anatomist, I was in Kendo/Iaido/Jujitsu for over 4 years, and the sheer brutality of some technique is utterly mindblowing. I can still remember the sting of that shinai even through almost an inch of padding.

Another thing I utterly abhor in movies, is the idea of a fight lasting 20 minutes. Two trained fighters and it is just a matter of who moves first and the fight is over in 10 seconds or so. I think it was in the Book of Five Rings "One two old tigers fight, one is killed there, and the other dies on the way home."

What did you train in? I was mostly a Kendo/Iaido worker. What sucks is it being like college, buy armor at 700 and then resale it for 100 or so. About broke my heart.

By Imaldris on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 11:43 am: Edit

oh, Corsetgirl: I read Hannibal and they are changing the ending. They (supposedly, but who knows?) going to have Clarise capture Hannibal and turn him in or he escapes again. But they are not using the real ending. Just out of curiosity, are you as mad as I am that Jodie Foster isn't playing the part this time?

By Imaldris on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 11:34 am: Edit

The best films I have seen this year are:

Taxi Driver (directors cut), now my most favorite movie of all time. Its very Camus "The Stranger"-like translated very beautifully into film. Can't say enough good things about it.

Bringing Out The Dead, with Nicolas Cage. Wow! Very slow and subtle, typical Sorcese work...makes no demands of the viewer and leaves you deep in thought for days after you watch the film. Not for everyone though, my friend described it as "boring", but she mainly likes romance movies like Hope Floats.

Elizabeth
Fight Club
The Matrix (cool ideology and effects.)
Re-released version of the Exorcist. That part where she stabbing herself in the crotch with a crucifix while yelling "Fuck me fuck me" shocked the hell out of me, and I am pretty jaded.

Can't think of any others, too tired. But I agree with Anatomist...the directors cut version of The Abyss was fantastic! Didn't really like Titantic too much, effects were cool though.

By Melinelly on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 11:01 am: Edit

well, i've not too much to add to this pot so i'll list some of my faves by genre and make coments by those that haven't been talked about yet...

BARAKA!!!!! (brings me to tears every time)

BOONDOCK SAINTS!!!!! (some people compare this to pulp fiction... screw that! this blows pf away! two irish catholic brothers in working class boston go big time vigilante taking out the scum of the earth!)

everything by Akira Kurosawa!

anime (features, not series):
Ghost in the Shell
Akira
Perfect Blue
Vampire Hunter D (for older animation, this movie still kicks bootay. they're actually working on a sequel, you can get a sneak peek on the new special edition dvd)
Mononoke No Hime

westerns:
The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
The Wild Bunch
Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid (soundtrack by Bob Dylan)
The Outlaw Josey Wales

sci-fi:
Alien, Aliens (3 was ok. Resurrection I refuse to see since they screwed H.R. Giger by hiring out new artists but using his designs and not even acknowledging him let alone paying him)
Fantastic Planet
The Matrix (good HK-style action AND a plot chock full of philosophical significance to boot)
2001
Red Dwarf: the Movie (ok ok it hasn't come out yet, but even if it sucks total arse i'll love it just to see the crew on the big screen!)
Dark City

Fantasy:
Labyrinth
Dark Crystal
The Last Unicorn
The Hobbit (gotta love that soundtrack too!)/Lord of the Rings (yeah they're totally abridged and all, but this is as good as it gets until this coming December heh go to http://www.lordoftherings.net to see what i'm talkin about if ya dunno already)
The Princess Bride

Action:
all Bruce Lee movies
Deadly China Hero (aka Last Hero in China, Deadly China Killer... this was the first Jet Li movie i saw. awesome fight scenes and REALLY hilarious!)
Fist of Legend (Jet Li in a masterful remake/rewrite of Fists of Fury)
The Storm Riders
Last Hurrah for Chivalry
The Matrix (see note above)

other various movies i must mention (also known as ok, i'm tired of thinking here's some more stuff i like):
Rocky Horror Picture Show (a must!)
Big Trouble in Little China
Escape From New York
The Stuff
Pink Floyd's The Wall
all the Monty Python movies
Fever Pitch (the english one about football and love... that's real football, not this sissy american crap we call football hehe)
Edward Scissorhands
Nightmare Before Christmas
Mindscape (two men and a woman talking as they walk through various rooms in a french castle. amazingly better than i just made it sound!)

ok i'm done for now.

By Anatomist1 on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 06:56 am: Edit

There's plenty of martial arts stuff that's fancy assed and ineffective, and there's plenty that's simple and devastating. If you saw unskilled and inexperienced people trying fancy stuff, I imagine it looked pretty silly. Many bouncers, bodyguards, and cops swear that aikido/jujutsu techniques are some of their most useful tools. I think this is because they are experienced and confident enough to usually have the upper hand, and they have a professional interest in minimizing the harm they do. In general, arts that are closer to real fighting are more effective, especially if they are trained with an intensity that sees the practitioners getting fairly seriously injured every so often. Personally, I don't think that kind of training is worth it in the context of my life. All I can say is that if you try to box an amatuer boxer or muay thai fighter, or if you go to ground with a brazilian jujutsu person armed with nothing but will and pain endurance, you'd better hope they have a merciful and generous nature.

K.

By Black_rabbit on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 06:16 am: Edit

You just have to know when to do something fancy-assed and when not to. Like, kicking at targets above the waist is not a good idea unless your opponent is somehow standing up but unconcious. Knowing how to break your opponents limb when you block his strike is something generally usefull, though.

I am with Anatomist on getting into a fight- the best way not to lose is not to get involved with one unless there is no better way.

But I got over the whole flying through the air kung-fu movie disgust thing- I think they're a hoot now (there was awhile there though, that I was really, really pissed about the popularity of the Power Rangers. Once, a woman came into our Dojo with her kid. She told him I was the blue ranger. Joy.)

By Pikkle on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 03:59 am: Edit

I like the part about drinking absinthe,
watching Fight Club and playing rugby... okay, i
just threw in the rugby part. Fighting is actually
pretty fascinating, even when you're involved.
Most of the time it's within seconds then you
spend the rest of the night trying to figure out
what happened while you pack ice on your
head. Don't knock it til you try it. And I'm not
talking about martial arts and aikido holds and
pressure points... been there, done that,
doesn't work in a real street fight, seen to
many people get fucked up trying to pull those
stunts. No, it's mostly will and pain
endurance, as well as skill and all that... and it
can be quite exhilerating to boot.

By Head_prosthesis on Monday, January 15, 2001 - 02:44 am: Edit

Marc,
Funny you should mention Big Tits.

RUSS MEYER = VIXEN, SUPERVIXENS, BEYOND THE VALLEY OF THE ULTRAVIXENS

and of course FASTER PUSSYCAT, KILL, KILL, KILL

By Midas on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 10:20 pm: Edit

Marc, I hardly take it to be a documentary. I like it for the reason I like the Lost Boys, not the reason I like something like Cabaret. It's a piece of fluff. A spangly piece of fluff you can stare at for a hour and a half. True, it's based on Bowie and Iggy Pop, and there has been more than a dab of artistic liscence used, but I don't give a toss. I'm sure none of the people the characters are based on are too fond of the movie (I know Bowie isn't very taken by it), but such is the nature of the media. And of celebrity.
If I like it, I'll watch it, if not, I won't. And I'm afraid I really do quite like Velvet Goldmine.
-Robert.

By Tavis on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 08:30 pm: Edit

Funny you should mention Iggy Pop, I'm listening to At The Drive-In at the moment, the Relationship of Command CD, and the track Iggy guests on was playing as I was reading. Synchronicity........

By Marc on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 08:22 pm: Edit

midas,

Velvet Goldmine was awful. Director Todd Haynes, who is gay, projected his own sexuality onto that of David Bowie and Iggy Pop. While Bowie and Pop may have flirted with bisexuality, it was mainly for theatrical purposes. Back in the 70's, David and Iggy's sexuality took a back seat to cocaine and heroin. I know. Iggy's a friend of mine. He's ultra-butch. Likes women with big tits and big asses.
His former wife, Suchi, is also a close friend of mine. She attended my last absinthe party. She has nothing but harsh words for the way Haynes depicted her former husband. Jonathan Rhys Meyers may have dreamy eyes, but, Velvet Goldmine is lies. Gay revisionism.

By Midas on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 08:07 pm: Edit

I knew I should have checked in here earlier. Kallisti, I was a Rocky-ite too. I now find it impossible to watch that movie without doing the call backs. Knee jerk reaction. Unlike most, I'm also partial to SHOCK TREATMENT. Worth it for the "Spot the Rocky Horror In-Joke" factor.
Others in my top 10:
WILDE ("The role Stephen Fry was born to play" Too true)
DROWNING BY NUMBERS
ORLANDO
VELVET GOLDMINE (I'm completely in love with Jonathan Rhys Meyers)
SEVEN
NADIA
Anything by John Waters (paticularly POLYESTER and HAIRSPRAY)
HEATHERS
and the list goes on and on and on....
-Robert

By Chrysippvs on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 06:15 pm: Edit

Man...I have to get out more.

Fav Movies I have seen, not neccesarly new, this year:

PI
Heavenly Creatures
Wilde
Fight Club


I know I have seen some more but I can't think of them. I liked SE7EN, Kevin Spacey probably kills prostitutes in real life...he strikes me as being insane in real life. Three Kings was novel.

I am not much for movies...

By Tavis on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 05:54 pm: Edit

Marc said: "BABY OF MACON was made years before PILLOW BOOK."

Never knew that, that's a surprise. The thing about watching good films in cinemas in Madrid is you can't really be sure if it's a rerun or not. I remember seeing such a scratchy, shitty The Cook, The Thief, His Wife and Her Lover, it must have been around the world at least five times. I should have checked my facts though, cheers for the info.

I remember when I watched BABY OF MACON that there were maybe 15 people in the room, and before the first half hour was over half of them had left. I must admit I was a bit dubious, some films are too wanky for their own good. But then it got much, much better....

By Head_prosthesis on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 04:19 pm: Edit

I meant watch the movie and drink, Anatomist. HOLY HELL!!! You can't say anything without feathers getting all ruffled.

SHEESH!!!

By Head_prosthesis on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 04:18 pm: Edit

Well Rupert you must have strayed off somewhere.
Better find those bread crumbs back. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

By Rupert1029 on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 03:56 pm: Edit

I thought this was the Absinthe Board.....

By Anatomist1 on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 03:01 pm: Edit

Count me out. The only kind of fighting I plan on doing is the unavoidable defense of myself and others I encounter who are less capable of doing the same. When you study the kind of martial arts that I have, you learn how to hurt people so badly that you have to find a way to stop your own imagination from illustrating all the possibilities (I know one man who had to quit japanese jujutsu to control his nightmares). Allowing a situation to degenerate into a physical conflict is, in itself, a defeat for everyone involved. There is nothing glamorous about it.

K.

By Head_prosthesis on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 01:59 pm: Edit

I've always said "Let's have an Absinthe Fight Club" Party...

By Marc on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 01:42 pm: Edit

Ian has cleaned up his act. I'm glad his recent shows have been great. I missed the one in New York. Dammit. See you at the other thread.

By Domingo on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 01:40 pm: Edit

Marc,
Then the show I saw was a model of recovery. I mean these guys were tight. One of my greatest fears is seeing a band that I really like suck. I gave up alot of tickets in fear/caution of perserving the image in my head.
The people I was with all agreed, best show this year.

I'm starting the next thread to jump this great movie one. List the shows you've seen and where. All of them! The good and the bad. Honesty counts and will be looked highly upon.

By Marc on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 01:40 pm: Edit

SHE SELLS SANCTUARY is an 80's song that doesn't sound at all dated. What a great intro.

By _blackjack_ on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 01:39 pm: Edit

"American History X" was a fine film. I actually watched it the same weekend I watched "SLC Punk". Oddly, Jennifer Lein (Kes from ST:Voyager) was in both...

By Marc on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 01:39 pm: Edit

FIGHT CLUB fans,

buy it on dvd, if you haven't already. The audio commentary by Fincher, Brad Pitt, Helena Bonham Carter and particularly Ed Norton, is truly
fascinating. Norton does most the talking and he's a brilliant guy.

By Pikkle on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 01:37 pm: Edit

The Cult was pretty cool... I remember USA
network used to show their concerts on late at
night... I really only liked 'Love' though as far as
their albums were concerned. That 80's glam
metal shit got the best of them.

By Pikkle on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 01:34 pm: Edit

Yes, the best ending of a film yet... I always
loved the Pixies anyway, but that scene really
took it away for me... and despite the
detractors, I though Ed Norton played a fine
skinhead in 'American History X.' His
transition to normalcy was less than
convincing but that's the movies...

By Marc on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 01:33 pm: Edit

I saw the Cult back in the mid-eighties. They put on a great live show. It's a shame drugs got the best of em. If it hadn't been for cocaine, singer Ian Asbury would have been a major star. I spent an evening with him in New York City. He was so fucking drunk he could barely stand, forget about conversation.

By Domingo on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 01:20 pm: Edit

Out of all said tonight, I have to agree and second the motion for best end of movie: Fight Club with the Pixies. A real goose bumps, can't believe I'm seeing/hearing ending. I've been listening to Death to the Pixies. By far the best live disc. Good call Marc.
They are one of those bands you want to kick your ass/regret not catching live.
Another one that I regreted not seeing but got to see was the Cult. They came through boston acouple of months ago. Very tight, very loud.
D

By Martin on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 12:53 pm: Edit

SLC Punk is a great movie. I should've included that on my list.

-Martin

By Artemis on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 12:39 pm: Edit

Lee Van Cleef, incredulously, in "Captain Apache":

"Snake CANYON?? IT'S FULLA SNAKES!!!!!"

By _blackjack_ on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 12:36 pm: Edit

SLC Punk. I've wached it over and over about 10 times. The characters are way too familiar. If you've ever had blue hair or booted a nazi, it's well worth seeing.

By Marc on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 12:13 pm: Edit

FIGHT CLUB spoiler alert.

I thought the end of FIGHT CLUB was one of the great moments in cinema's history: Ed Norton (half his face blown off) and
Helena Bonham Carter holding hands as buildings explode and collapse to the Pixie's song "Where Is My Mind". Orgasmic. A great marriage of film
and rock and roll.

By Martin on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 12:00 pm: Edit

I'm basing my opinion on Seven and Fight Club, I've seen other movies of his that I enjoyed to the very end, it is his masterful ability to disappoint me with the above mentioned films that has me believe him exceptionally good at doing so, even though not necessarily every time. I really like the whole Alien series.

-Martin

By Head_prosthesis on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 11:35 am: Edit

ENDING ALERT!!!!


I only ask because I felt THE GAME would have ended perfectly if the bullets in the gun had been real.

By Head_prosthesis on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 11:32 am: Edit

Martin,

I'm wondering what you found wrong with Fincher's ALIEN 3?

By Head_prosthesis on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 11:25 am: Edit

I have my dictionary and thesaurus. They're under my seat so I can reach desk the desktop...

By Brspiritus on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 11:18 am: Edit

Ok I had to add my two cents...

Anything James Bond I love, especially THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS and LISCENSE TO KILL. Pierce Brosnan Sucks at the part of Bond though... I love CONAN THE BARBARIAN, THE MUMMY both the original and the new one, BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA is great that has to be my all time fav. STAR WARS and STAR TREK Movies, Brahn Stoker's Dracula (hey you gotta love it, that's what got me into Absinthe), Interview with the Vampire... hell anything with Vampires LOL I particularly love THE LOST BOYS. I could go on and on so I'll leave it at that.

By Martin on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 11:08 am: Edit

gimme a break... next time I'll make sure I have my dictionary and thesaurus handy. Sorry, but that sentence was very difficult to word.

-M.

By _blackjack_ on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 11:04 am: Edit


Quote:

That movie does an excellent job of begging the question, "what importance is there in being human?"



Please look up what the phrase "begging the question" means before you use it again. Look under petitio principii.


Sorry...pet peeve...

By Corsetgirl on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 10:44 am: Edit

Fight Club is my favorite movie :) "Deliver me from swedish furniture"
I also like Dr Stranglove and Clockwork Orange. Other than that I like *bad* horror and sci-fi flicks. Really bad horror:Friday the 13th XXX Jason Dies (and this time we mean it)

Has anyone read Hannibal? I'm looking forward to the movie, but I hear it ends differently than the book

Toodles!

By Martin on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 10:32 am: Edit

"The idea that there was some kind of special knowledge or release or revelation connected to the characters' quest to "hit bottom" became more and more dubious..."

Much like the movie.

I did really enjoy the movie, but I would have found it to be much more profound if I hadn't already come to the exact same conclusions and ideas on my own. I'm sure there's alot of people out there who could possibly come away from that movie enlightened and filled with ideas, but it was nothing new to me. I was actually quite disappointed when the hypocrisy of Tyler Durden became more and more apparent... David Fincher is great a making movies that start out incredible and seem like they're leading up to making a very profound point and then fall right on their faces, proving absolutely nothing at all.

I thought a minute about people who might not have seen Seven before I started talking about the ending, but I decided that the ending really isn't worth waiting for and is totally predictable anyway. I don't think I really spoiled anything for those who haven't seen it by now.

If you want to see a quality movie with a profound, deep plot that will challenge your intellect in a very productive way, I highly recommend Ghost in the Shell. It is one of the finest anime films ever. Challenge your intellect? No, I mean challenge your Existance. That movie does an excellent job of begging the question, "what importance is there in being human?"

-Martin

By Head_prosthesis on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 08:21 am: Edit

I read Fight Club. My problem was that I saw the film first so I pictured everything in context to what I saw on the screen. I still enjoyed it from a literary stand point.

GEEK LOVE was a great book. I'd love to see a film made of that. I'm afraid it would fall way short of the book though.

By Head_prosthesis on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 08:18 am: Edit

Fine Films of Humour (pre PC)

GROOVE TUBE
KENTUCKY FRIED MOVIE
SEX O'CLOCK NEWS
LOOSE SHOES

By Anatomist1 on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 08:14 am: Edit

Have any FIGHT CLUB fans read the book? I tried to read it but had to quit 1/3 of the way through. It started with some good ideas, and some nice language useage, then deteriorated into one peurile, debaucherous, non sequitur after another. The idea that there was some kind of special knowledge or release or revelation connected to the characters' quest to "hit bottom" became more and more dubious, until I finally just didn't care at all. It made me lose interest in seeing the movie.

K.

By Head_prosthesis on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 08:03 am: Edit

RAISING ARIZONA "sometimes I get the menstrual cramps real hard."

BLUE VELVET "Don't you FUCKING LOOK AT ME!!!"

FIGHT CLUB "Marla...the little scratch on the roof of your mouth that would heal if only you could stop tonguing it, but you can't."

ESCAPE FROM NEW YORK "Snake Plisskin? I heard you were dead"

BOXING HELENA "Hellena! Hellena!!!"

FULL METAL JACKET (every word from Sgt. Hartman's mouth is priceless)

ASSAULT ON PRECINCT 13 "Gotta smoke?"

CONAN THE BARBARIAN "Conan! What are the good things in life? TO CRUSH YOUR ENEMIES, TO SEE THEM DRIVEN BEFORE YOU, AND TO HEAR THE LAMENTATIONS OF THE WOMEN!"

THE ADVENTURES OF BUCKAROO BONZAI ACROSS THE 8TH DIMESION "Where ever you go there you are"

By Marc on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 07:50 am: Edit

tavis,

BABY OF MACON was made years before PILLOW BOOK.

HAPPINESS was directed by Todd Solondz, a neighbor and acquaintance of mine.

May I suggest that before revealing major plot points, like the ending of a film, we post the following words:
SPOILER ALERT.

Martin revealed the ending of SEVEN. Not everybody has seen it.

SEVEN is a brilliant film, in my opinion. Director
David Fincher followed it with the even more brilliant FIGHT CLUB. FIGHT CLUB may be my favorite movie of the 90's. It's a CLOCKWORK ORANGE for the new millenium.

By _blackjack_ on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 07:14 am: Edit

Three Kings was very good. It suffered from the same mis-marketing that plagued Fight Club. It wasn't a macho-bullshit war movie. If anything, it was an anti-macho-bullshit movie. It showed the sheer absurdity of our intervention in Iraq and Kuwait with humor and a good heart.

And Geroge Cloony is dreamy.

Speaking of which, O Borther Where Art Thou was a lot of fun. It was downright cheery compared to a lot of Cohen Borthers stuff, but still sharp. Grat soudtrack, too, if you like bluegrass...

By Tavis on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 07:10 am: Edit

Haven't seen many movies in the past year, but here's a list from the last few years anyway:

-Breaking the Waves (Lars Von Trier, his earlier film Europa is also very good)
-Stuart Little (he is just so cute, I was almost crying all the way through)
-Eat Drink Man Woman (Ang Lee's film before Sense & Sensibility)
-The Baby of Macon (Peter Greenaway back on track after The Pillow Book)
-Abre Los Ojos (Amenabar, I forget his first name. A top Spanish movie aping some aspects of The Matrix, according to the Times. Only it was made first)
-Happiness (don't know the director, don't care. A truly brilliant film)
-Twin Town (hilarious, and no, Swansea isn't all like that)

Tavis

By _blackjack_ on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 07:08 am: Edit

Oh, I don't think sciece and religion are mutually exclusive; I just wish they were. I don't get faith. I've spent the better part of my life studying religion and I get it less than I did when I started. It certainly isn't necisssary, and I have yet to find a situation in which it is more useful than other alternatives...

My problem in Contact was at the end, Foster's character starts using faith in science's territory. She asks people to just believe her, instead of doing what a scientist would have done: attempt to repeat the experiment, go over the data witha fine-toothed comb, etc. Had what happened to her in the movie hapened to me, I would have assumed it an hallucination until I found objective evidence to the contrary. I guess that makes me a party pooper...

By Pikkle on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 07:03 am: Edit

Planet of the Apes, all 5!

By Artemis on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 07:00 am: Edit

"Hey! I work for USA Today! It takes a lot of work to put out that garbage!"

Sorry, I meant to say McDonald's.

By Martin on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 06:46 am: Edit

The movies I best remember seeing and enjoying in the past year.....

Ghost in the Shell
Pi
Elizabeth
Perfect Blue
Fight Club
The Doom Generation

Of course these didn't necessarily come out in the last year, I just now got around to seeing them.

I watched Seven for the first time at this past New Year's party. It started out like a pretty cool movie, but it totally turned to shit. The ending was absolutely horrible and predictable. "What's in the box?! What's in the box?!"... gimme a fuckin' break! That scene had probably some of the worst acting I've ever seen (of course I haven't wasted any brain cells watching Dark Angel yet, so I could be wrong). And the whole predictable, ironic ending of him shooting the bad guy and thereby proving his point (by commiting the 7th sin, Wrath) was really stupid. It would have been much better if he had just shot himself. It would have completely ruined the bad buy's plans, leaving him disproven and devastated, and would have given that poor cop closure on his ruined life. Hollywood just doesn't have the right attitude about suicide.

I really want to see Crouching Tiger, it sounds really cool. Unfortunately it probably won't come to theatres around here, so I'll just have to wait for it to come out on video.

-Martin

By Hersaint on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 06:43 am: Edit

What about the Italian Job (Michael Caine)... was that a big film in the states

"Its a Self Presevation Society"

By Marc on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 06:38 am: Edit

domingo,

the Sean Penn movie about the Irish mob was
SAVING GRACE.

THE POPE OF GREENWICH VILLAGE starred Mickey Rourke and Eric Roberts. It was about the Italian mob.

By Domingo on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 06:17 am: Edit

List of a couple of movies/actors I like:

Bar Fly w/ Mickey Rouke
From Here To Eternity (same guy who wrote Thin Red Line)
Bad Boys w/ Sean Penn
A Boys Life w/ Decaprio/Deniro
I forget name of movie, stars Penn and Gary Oldman in N.Y. as Irish mob (Prince of Grenwich Village)
anything w/ Robert Mitchum
Pappillion
The Bullet
The French Connection
Ronin
movies with well done chase scenes/ Steve McQueen
please excuse spelling/errors, spending a qiet Sunday cooking Portugese= lots of wine and beer
Mussells Catalana (pork and shellfish) real inquesition meal

Domingo

By Anatomist1 on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 06:08 am: Edit

blackjack,

If you think science and religious faith are mutually exclusive, you are sadly mistaken. They are almost entirely separate enterprises. Science makes a lousy religion, and religion makes lousy science. The problem comes when people get them mixed up. Personally, I'm strongly in favor of everyone undergoing 'deep, religious-like transformations', just so long as there's no avaricious guru around to convince them that it means 'hate your neighbor' when they come down.

K.

By Hersaint on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 06:07 am: Edit

Family Film

Wizard of Oz, The (1939)

Probably the Film of the Millennium for me, it has stood the test of time and is either loved or hated but a big thumbs up from me.....

Action

few in here that just blow me away namely the two Quentin Tarantino flicks

True Romance, Patricia Arquette I think I love you !

From Dusk till Dawn great story (Outrageous), lots of blood and guts and mindless violence and a great woman (Salma Hayek)(yeah I know Iím a sucker for a pretty girl!!!)


Luc Besson's Leon also responsible for Nikita
Both good action movies with a good plot too


Sci-Fi

John Carpenter's The Thing was way ahead of its time and still a favorite

Dark City by Alex Proyas I thought was great, dark and moody and keeps you guessing until the end.

I could go on and on but instead leave you with a picture of salma

salma

By Marc on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 05:52 am: Edit

CASTAWAY,
directed by Robert Zemeckis, has a similar spiritual theme to his film CONTACT. Zemeckis, while avoiding using the word God, evokes in both films a sense of transcendence or rapture. A moment of clarity. Jodie Foster and Tom Hanks both go on "trips" that result in a deep, religious-like transformation. Neither Hanks or Foster are seekers (in the religious sense), revelation is thrown upon them. Both films have ambigous endings. The characters have been changed, deeply and fundamentally. What is their next step? What do they do with their new knowledge?

By _blackjack_ on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 05:07 am: Edit

OK, not Christian, precisely, but religious. A scientist learning to have faith is NOT what I consider a happy ending.

By Anatomist1 on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 04:31 am: Edit

The two biggest villains in the movie were a terrorist preacher who thought the aliens were satanic, and a bureaucrat who weaseled his way into the first cockpit by declaring he was a Christian, in distinction to Foster's atheism/agnosticism. Foster's love interest -- the 'Father Joss' character -- was a former preacher who quit because he enjoyed sex. It's true that there is a stong faith theme in the movie. However, Foster's character has the strongest faith -- which is redeemed, but not institutionally acknowledged -- and is the least religious. If this is Christian propaganda, it's doing a rotten job.

K.

By _blackjack_ on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 04:11 am: Edit

Contact, the movie anyway, sounded more like Christian propeganda to me than science fiction...

By Anatomist1 on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 04:04 am: Edit

Oh yeah. I watched about 10 minutes of that DARK ANGEL. It was terrible to the point of camp. That woman may look hot in her tight black suit... until she opens her mouth. Arnold Schwartenegger could give her acting lessons. The only reason I tuned into it was that I thought it had something to do with THE CROW. I was hoping to catch some zombie revenge.

K.

By Anatomist1 on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 03:58 am: Edit

I have to agree about some of that dialogue in The Abyss, especially at the end... oh well. It didn't kill it for me, though. CONTACT is still the best encounter with benevolent aliens for my money.

I haven't seen the Ang Lee movie yet, but I probably will on the strength of so many raves I've heard. Ang Lee himself showed it privately to a group of film students at the theater where I work, about a month ago, then gave a talk afterwards. The head manager at the theater didn't call me. I showed up an hour after it was all over and had the honor of breaking it down and putting it back in the cans. Yipee.

Talk about giggling, I find that Hong-Kong style, physics-defying martial arts stuff utterly ridiculous... I guess groaning would be more like it. Having spent years studying martial arts, I prefer to watch feats of strength and skill that are more plausible. I'd rather watch 5 minutes of Cirque du Soliel than every fake MATRIX-style defiance of gravity ever cut and printed. I did enjoy the parodies in BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA though.

Older japanese movies with Toshiro Mifune have excellent sword fights. Most americans don't like realistic fight scenes, because they're over so quick -- look down at your popcorn, and you miss most of it. Unfortunately, Stephen Segal has the best fights in contemporary movies. Excepting possibly ABOVE THE LAW, all of his movies are nearly unwatchable. I rent them and fast-forward past all the non-fight sequences.

K.

By _blackjack_ on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 03:18 am: Edit

I never even bothered with "Dark Angel" because, of course, it's on up against "Angel" and I'm a horrible Buffy geek.

I saw the Squatting Hamster, Spitting Cockroach or whatever, and was a little disappointed. Don't get me wrong, it was a great kung-fu movie, but I can only assume that the Western critics that were drooling over it were un-aware that there have been some really great kung-fu movies coming out of HK for decades. And I'm with Marc; I could look at Chow Yun-fat all day.

Marc: I'm not surprised you dug Almost Famous, ya hippie! Granted, it was a retread of the same basic story Crowe has been doing for years, but it had a really good heart, which is rare in movies these days.

Titanic...ugh...

Artimis: Hey! I work for USA Today! It takes a lot of work to put out that garbage!

By Artemis on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 01:36 am: Edit

I must be insufficiently critical. I avoided "Titanic" for a couple of years because so much noise had been made about it, I figured it must be the "USA Today" of movies - wildly popular garbage.

When I saw it, I could find no fault with it whatsoever, other than I'd prefer not to have to wait that long for little Leonardo to drown.

By Artemis on Sunday, January 14, 2001 - 01:33 am: Edit

"That whole segment may be the most romantic thing I've ever seen on film. I know the sight of her bluish lifeless face will be with me forever... "

Now that's one I've never heard on "Siskel and Ebert"!

By Head_prosthesis on Saturday, January 13, 2001 - 11:40 pm: Edit

"Audiences are hungry for something other than the same old idiot junk being spewed out by American studios."

While this may be true, I think that CTHD is a little light on action for the Young Country, WWF, NASCAR crowd that makes up a big chunk of the American viewing audience.

By Head_prosthesis on Saturday, January 13, 2001 - 11:32 pm: Edit

I saw Crouching Tiger. I enjoyed it. The first few scenes of the "thief" running around the roof reminded me of Strange Brew when Bob & Doug's dog Hoser was rolling up the roof of their house.

By Marc on Saturday, January 13, 2001 - 07:49 pm: Edit

Here's a list of my favorite Hong Kong action flicks:

The Killer diredtor John Woo
Hardboiled dir. John Woo
Bullet In The Head dir. John Woo

Peking Opera Blues dir. Tsui Hark
Once Upon The Time In China 1 & 2 dir. Tsui Hark
Warriors Of Zu Mountain dir.Tsui Hark

Full Contact dir. Ringo Lam

Naked Killer dir. Clarence Fok Yiu-leung

Rouge dir. Stanley Kwan

The Bride With White Hair dir. Ronny Yu


The above films are a great introduction the wildly imaginative world of Hong Kong action/fantasy films. These are truly unique films that combine non-stop action and ultra-violence with old-school Hollywood-style melodrama and romance. This stuff kicks-ass.
Hong Kong directors have been clearly inspired by American directors such as Sam Peckinpah, John Carpenter,Sam Raimi, Sergio Leone, Coppola and Scorsese. But, nothing coming out Hollywood has ever been as comically violent as the Hong Kong flicks.
Check these suckers out. They'll blow you away.

By Admin on Saturday, January 13, 2001 - 07:20 pm: Edit

Yay Marc! I'm glad you finally saw Crouching Tiger, I haven't yet ... but they're showing it at the IMAX on Fridays I think, and I must catch it on that huuuuge screen. I have to agree that so much of the asian cinema we've seen lately totally blows hollywood, and I mean literally, right where it counts. Chow Yun Fat is my definition of a papa, he's absolutely brilliant in everything I've seen.

Alright, my beef with Cameron, and Titanic in particular, while it is a wonderful production and makes for a thrilling ride, is the script. Gawd but his text is AWFUL. Its smarmy, trite and downright unartistic in ANY sense. I don't even mind the schmalz so much, if it was just executed less insultingly. Which is why I giggled through the first half of Titanic (much to the annoyance of the rest of the audience), all the dialog struck me as so ludicrous. But once that ship started sinking, I was riveted, and it is worth it I think for the pure artistry of watching that ship go down.

By Marc on Saturday, January 13, 2001 - 06:16 pm: Edit

I recently saw (for the 2nd time) the director's cut of THE ABYSS on dvd. It doesn't hold a candle to Cameron's masterwork ALIENS, but it's still an engaging action flick. Though, the end with Mastrantonio pledging her love to Ed Harris via a microphone as he decends into the murky depths is pretty awful.

I know I'll get shit for this, but, I really like Cameron's The Titanic. It's a great piece of popular filmmaking. Nothing profound, just solid entertainment.

By Marc on Saturday, January 13, 2001 - 06:08 pm: Edit

I am predicting that CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON will have a doestic gross of between 50 and 60 million bucks. That's a decent take for most Hollywood flicks. But, for a film in Mandarin,
it's simply amazing. I think this bodes well for international cinema. Hollywood better take note.
Audiences are hungry for something other than the same old idiot junk being spewed out by American studios.

By Marc on Saturday, January 13, 2001 - 05:53 pm: Edit

Finally saw Ang Lee's epic martial arts fairytale "CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON" tonight, twice, in 2 different theaters. The first theater had terrible sound. I sat thru it nonetheless. I felt cheated. But, the second theater had a huge screen and the sound was terrific. As a fan of Tsui Harks' films,
I was somewhat underwhelmed by CTHD's martial arts scenes. While being wonderfully imaginative, they're still not as good as the scenes in Hark's
"ONCE UPON A TIME IN CHINA", "PEKING OPERA BLUES" or "WARRIORS OF ZU MOUNTAIN". But, Ang lee brings a deeper humanity and better acting to film than Hark. So, CTHD is a more satisfying experience overall. Hong Kong actors Chow Yun Fat and Michelle Yeoh are enormously charismatic perfomers. I can't think of any two contemporary American actors who radiate the effortless star quality of Yeoh and Yun Fat. CTHD is a very good movie filled with breathtaking cinematography, poetic dialogue and brilliantly executed action. Imagine a hybrid
of THE MATRIX ,David Lean and Akira Kurasowa . Is it the best film of the year? Nope. That goes to ALMOST FAMOUS. But, it may be the most important film of the year. CTHD is doing amazing boxoffice . The theater I saw it in, here in Vegas, was packed. This for a foreign film with subtitles and no American stars . A film that is delicate, poetic and artful. While Hollywood garbage is being unspooled in theaters across the planet, it seems there is an audience for intelligent alternatives. Are Americans ready to embrace the cinematic art of other cultures? Based on the applause and laughter at tonights screening of CTHD, I'd say yes.
As Stallone and Ahnuld ride off into the distance, is America finally ready for Chow Yun Fat?

By Admin on Saturday, January 13, 2001 - 05:42 pm: Edit

Oh, and speaking of "veary ..." I used to shake the rocky horror shimmy shammy in Berkeley in the 80's.

Here's me, at the age of umm, I think 15 in, uh, 1983. And believe it or not, I'm wearing a wig, my head was shaved at the time, or very nearly shaved. Growing out of being shaved. My hair was very short, about 1/4 of an inch.

magenta

By Admin on Saturday, January 13, 2001 - 05:13 pm: Edit

Thanks Anatomist. Morrigan and I tried to rev this up, but it got lost in the miasma of "Ladies Welcome" ...

I think Aliens is the only Cameron movie that I can stomach without giggling. Though I actually prefer the arty quiet of the original. I was hoping to like his tv show "Dark Angel" (because I'm a geek) but, in typical Cameron style, it was so badly written and directed, while all the money and artistry was thrown into flashy production that, once again, all I could do was giggle at it.

I am a cinema whore and watch movies constantly. Its the only thing that justifies my cable bill. Juliette Binoche is exquisite, I must agree. She is wonderfully sublime in the close-up department.

As for new films, I am going to see both "Shadow of the Vampire" & "House of Mirth" this weekend. I can hardly contain myself.

Anyone know where to get a cheap tricorn hat? I need one for a pirate whore costume, or a whore pirate for that matter.

By Anatomist1 on Saturday, January 13, 2001 - 03:07 pm: Edit

Another movie that surprised the hell out of me recently was HOMICIDE by David Mamet, with Joe Mantegna. It starts out like your basic gritty cop movie, and then becomes a wonderfully ambiguous piece on self-examination, zionism, professional ethics, and the notion of identity itself. I love a movie that has the guts to let you dangle...

K.

By Anatomist1 on Saturday, January 13, 2001 - 02:50 pm: Edit

OK. In the words of Magenta Raff: "I grow veary of this vorld". Anyone want to talk about movies?

Myself, I am currently turned way on by James Cameron's THE ABYSS director's cut. First of all, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio is angelic, even in crappy movies. Anyone seen MY LIFE SO FAR (also starring the angelic Irene Jacob - DOUBLE LIFE OF VEROIQUE, RED)? I'm a pushover for an actress whose beauty is all in the nuances, and for some reason they seem to mostly hail from Europe. Anyway, I'm a sucker for tension-filled tales about aliens -- whether they be wise and benevolent or extremely vicious (ALIENS, another Cameron flick, is one of my all-time favorites). The whole idea of a sci-fi movie where we go down and in, instead of up and out, is great. And, let's face it, spaceship movies are basically just submarine movies.

I think the master-stroke of the movie was the part where Mary Elizabeth volunteers, and then insists, on being the one to drown, hoping that hypothermia and rescucitation efforts will save her, but basically just being bitch enough to insist on being the one to die. That whole segment may be the most romantic thing I've ever seen on film. I know the sight of her bluish lifeless face will be with me forever...

Speaking of immortality, doesn't it seem that the art of film acting IS the art of subtly controlled facial expressions? Garbo was way ahead of her time, and my current pick for standard-bearer is Juliette Binoche.

K.

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