Whatcha Been Watching?

This is the place where you can confab about all the other stuff besides videogames.
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DomsBeard
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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

Post by DomsBeard »

Aladdin 2019.

Brilliant I really enjoyed it. I had put of watching as the original is my favourite Disney film but it is a fun couple of hours. Will Smith great as the Genie

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Alex79uk
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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

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Watching Criminal on Netflix right now. On the second episode, the first one was good. If I had one criticism, at 45 minutes or so, it's a little short and could have done with the full hour. The end was ever so slightly rushed, I felt.

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FemalePheromones
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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

Post by FemalePheromones »

This has probably been brought up before but I've just watched Midsommar and all I can think is what the fuck did I just watch?

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Caligulas Horse
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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

Post by Caligulas Horse »

FemalePheromones wrote:
September 25th, 2019, 3:15 pm
This has probably been brought up before but I've just watched Midsommar and all I can think is what the fuck did I just watch?
Midsommar

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FemalePheromones
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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

Post by FemalePheromones »

Good answer.

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FemalePheromones
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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

Post by FemalePheromones »

I was sat home alone with the curtains closed. Was honestly pretty unnerved.

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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

Post by FemalePheromones »

Yes that was exactly it the gore itself was fine it was more the thing of not knowing what's going in and the tension which is masterfully created by a lack of score and tracking shots.

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FemalePheromones
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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

Post by FemalePheromones »

clippa wrote:
September 26th, 2019, 2:11 am
I watched midsommar, it was good. Best visual representation of psychedelics I've seen on film.
Yes! It was great it really helped you get into the sense of paranoia and the character's perspectives.

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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

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Don't know if anyone is watching The Capture on the BBC at the moment (4 of 6 episodes aired so far) but it's pretty great. An almost Assassins Creed type templar/assassin style of conspiracy with good guys and bad guys, no idea what's going on but really enjoying it.

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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

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Alex79uk wrote:
September 26th, 2019, 9:06 pm
Don't know if anyone is watching The Capture on the BBC at the moment (4 of 6 episodes aired so far) but it's pretty great. An almost Assassins Creed type templar/assassin style of conspiracy with good guys and bad guys, no idea what's going on but really enjoying it.
Haha! We are watching it too. I hadn’t made the assassins creed connection yet but it’s one of those series where my wife loved it at first but as it starts to unravel I’m the one itching to know what happens next.

We started watching it and I thought here’s another generic police drama something my wife loves but not for me so I’d play super Mario world on my WiiU. As the series has gone on Mario has been dying a lot more and the tablet has sat on my lap for long stretches as it’s becoming increasingly surprising and unpredictable.

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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

Post by Alex79uk »

Haha same here, my girlfriend wanted to watch it but has become less enthralled as the conspiracy stuff becomes more apparent, she just likes a straightforward police show, but I'm really loving the direction it's gone. Don't really remember seeing anything quite like this coming out of the UK before, not outside of Black Mirror anyway, which I guess is the closest I can come to finding a comparison, and it's a tenuous link at best.

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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

Post by Simonsloth »

Alex79uk wrote:
September 26th, 2019, 9:19 pm
Haha same here, my girlfriend wanted to watch it but has become less enthralled as the conspiracy stuff becomes more apparent, she just likes a straightforward police show, but I'm really loving the direction it's gone. Don't really remember seeing anything quite like this coming out of the UK before, not outside of Black Mirror anyway, which I guess is the closest I can come to finding a comparison, and it's a tenuous link at best.
Maybe it’s deliberate. Target the more persuasive demographic then lasso the rest of the sofa for the ride before the crowd pleasing conclusion. To be honest I hope that the end isn’t predictable and boring although I suspect it will be.

It’s line of duty with a sprinkle of Dan Brown. I hope they aren’t afraid to run down that path and be a bit different. It’s BBC so I guess they’ll play it safe.

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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

Post by dezm0nd »

Just finished an entire run of The Sopranos (again) but reading a book which analyses each episode.

Its quite the journey

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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

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Finally got around to watching season one of the "unfilmable" American Gods. Its one of my favorite books so don't know why it's taken me so long, but it's brilliant! The special effects, the soundtrack, the story. It's pretty faithful to the book, with a few additions that only add to the story. Really fantastic job they've done, looking forward to starting season two now.

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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

Post by dezm0nd »

ThirdMan wrote:
September 27th, 2019, 1:23 pm
dezm0nd wrote:
September 27th, 2019, 11:57 am
Just finished an entire run of The Sopranos (again) but reading a book which analyses each episode.

Its quite the journey
What book was it? I've been thinking of doing something similar for my next (fourth) run through. Maybe a book or a podcast.
It's called The Sopranos sessions. Came out this year and it's got plenty of extra talk about controversial moments at the end of the book

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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

Post by Simonsloth »

ThirdMan wrote:
September 28th, 2019, 8:29 pm
Brazil (Prime)

I watched this across multiple sittings and I still had Orson Welles' adaptation of Kafka's The Trial in the back of my mind. Those are less than ideal conditions for taking in a film as layered and bizarre as this. I needed to watch it in one go and on its own terms and unfortunately I didn't.

Even so, I really enjoyed it. It's not the dark headfuck I thought it would be. Gilliam dispenses with Kafka's swelling paranoia and doubles down on his absurdism. It's a really funny film. As with Time Bandits, the highlight is the physical special effects. This is a film that cranks, grinds and wheezes its way to the finish line. It's delightful, timeless stuff. Gilliam couldn't have known how far CGI would advance in the decades ahead and, perversely, how poor many of those effects would look even 5 years after release. He believed in his team and their sellotape-and-cardboard philosophy and his films still look brilliant because of it.

I'm loath to rank this against his other works just yet because I'll have to rewatch it at some point. However my gut reaction is that it still wouldn't supersede my beloved 12 Monkeys. That is my Gilliam. A grungy, paranoid, 90's erection of a film that arrived just as I was entering my teenage years.

I envy those of you that experienced Brazil for the first time at such an impressionable age. It's easy to see why it's held in such high regard.
Brazil is one of my favourite films and I was lucky enough to go to a secret cinema celebration of the film.(they also did one for Third Man!)

If you haven’t heard of it Secret Cinema is a sort of interactive production/love letter to the film. It was set in a disused office block in Croydon in South West London and they projected the film on the central courtyard whilst actors abseiled down the inside. They recreated so many scenes and even the restaurant.

There’s a mini trailer below which makes it look like a bunch of crazy interpretative dancers decided to put the film on while intoxicated but it was amazing to experience. I’ll never forget it.

https://youtu.be/MS4cX-lAC6k

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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

Post by FemalePheromones »

ThirdMan wrote:
September 28th, 2019, 8:29 pm

I envy those of you that experienced Brazil for the first time at that impressionable age. It's easy to see why it's held in such high regard.
I first watched Brazil as a teenager and didn't know much of Gilliam other than the fact he did 12 Monkeys which I thought was the most confusing film I'd ever seen.

Haven't watched either of them for a second time.

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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

Post by Stanshall »

Studio Ghibli season at FACT in Liverpool in November. I'm about an hour away but I saw Howl's Moving Castle there several years ago and it was incredible on the big screen. I'll be driving over to check out Totoro, Mononoke and Spirited Away.

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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

Post by FemalePheromones »

I don't intend to find out to be honest.

I did actually really like The Imaginarium of Dr Parnassus though. I've seen that multiple times. Actually and Fear and Loathing a couple of times but that's pretty weird too.

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Re: Whatcha Been Watching?

Post by DomsBeard »

ThirdMan wrote:
September 29th, 2019, 6:54 pm
Rambo: Last Blood (Cinema)

Panned by critics, enjoyed by audiences, it's a Sylvester Stallone franchise film! Except it's also something different this time. Sly has never been this nasty before. It's easily the most graphically violent film that I've ever seen. That's not hyperbole. It really is sickening. I'll never look at a pitchfork in the same way again.

I'd read a lot of coverage of this beforehand and the better reviews and BTL comments were from those familiar with the series. They spoke about what, at his best, John Rambo represented and how this final (yeah, right) entry departs from that. Many of them really disliked the film but the overall critical context was satisfying to read.

Many more reviews were simple reaction shots that took the film down for its xenophobic 'sub-text'. I'm not going to disagree with that. The final 30 minutes involve sweeping shots of an existing Arizona-Mexico border wall followed by an invasion of murderous Mexican gangsters. Calling this sub-text is to completely misunderstand the word 'sub'. It's real, it's obvious and it's up there on the screen.

I do think there's a distinction between films that's are overtly racist (Birth of a Nation) and a film like this, which is trying to profit from racial tension. If the current 'threat' to the USA was isolationist white-patriot groups then we'd have had Rambo in clearing out their bunkers with his serrated dagger. However that's not where the media attention and controversy is right now. Someone, somewhere, counted all the potential profits and so what we got was this race-baiting slice of a bygone Hollywood.

It's a deeply disappointing element but, for me at least, it's not decisive. I think I'm savvy enough to enjoy a film like this for what it is - a gory exploitation film - without getting too deep in the weeds. But I'm a white man living on an island off the coast of Western Europe. That means it's a lot easier for me to ignore what I don't like about the film. And yet it's not simply a case of sticking my head in the sand. I can appreciate vigilante films despite my real-world objection to the types of resolutions they advance. I like these films. In fact I don't watch enough of them.

The guys over on the excellent Radio vs. the Martians! podcast once covered the topic of vigilante fiction. The panel was comprised of four socially-progressive men talking about the history, and their enjoyment, of right-wing power fantasies such as the Dirty Harry and Death Wish series of films. It made for an interesting show. They all agreed that they would openly demonstrate against any real-life Harry Callahans, yet the on-screen version was a source of jubilation.

And I get that. In Last Blood our anti-hero is faced with a de-humanising sex-ring that is drugging and raping young women. I don't want him to tap their phones and build a slow, detailed case with a high probability of conviction before a criminal court. I want him to do exactly as he does - smash their skulls in with a hammer. It's what the guys on the panel described as "the fuck yeah moment" - that temperature raising, involuntary rush of glee when a scumbag gets what he had coming to him.

Rambo: Last Blood is an average example of that type of film and feeling, but it still 'works'. The racial politics, particularly the drone shots of the border-wall, weren't needed for the pay-off to deliver on its promise. So their inclusion was unnecessary as well as anything else. But I enjoyed it. I can't, and wont', pretend that I didn't.

Incidentally, it seems that Mark Kermode, the 'UK's leading film critic', saw but chose not to review the film on his radio show. I've been listening to Kermode for the best part of 15 years and I can't recall another instance of that happening. He often remarks on the crap he has to sit through in order to do his job, and his 'rants' about the films he really dislikes are legendary. By his own admission he's an old-school, card-carrying lefty and I think that he may have tried to completely starve Last Blood of oxygen. I could be wrong, but if I'm not then it's a low-point for his show and a sign that his ever-increasing frustration with world politics is clouding his professional judgement. He saw the film but only commented on it during the subsequent week's coverage of the current box-office top-10, at which point he had no choice to at least say something.

Finally, an unwelcome feature of some of the reviews has been the open mockery of Stallone's physical appearance. Wendy Ide, in her review for The Observer, described him as looking like "a sculpture chiselled from boiled ham". Meanwhile, in The Guardian Peter Bradshaw commented on Stallone's "impassive face" that looks like a "sculpture created by Picasso out of a Firestone tyre". He then continues by jeering at Stallone's enunciation.

Sly has clearly had "work done", but as always his dominant characteristic is his facial paralysis, effecting his jaw, lip, tongue, chin and voice, which was caused by complications during his birth. For Bradshaw to ridicule Stallone's "impassive" face, vocal delivery and surgical procedures that may have been taken to alleviate those problems (and stave-off old age, to be fair!) as Stallone entered his twilight years, is really quite disgraceful.
Really interesting post Thirdman. I'm a big Rambo fan, (Rocky never did anything for me apart from cry when I was a kid as I couldn't understand Mr T being the bad guy) and Rambo 4 left me cold and it seems to have doubled down on it in Last Blood. I don't suppose a Rambo ''No Blood'' would work too well where John goes around taking down NRA members verbally and it ending with the US banning Automatic rifles. You never know!.

I always wish he could've just made the character in expendables John Rambo that would have made more sense to me

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