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RE: Top 100 Films I've Wathced This Year: 2009 - 1/11/2009 2:25:21 PM   
FritzlFan


Posts: 4793
Joined: 19/11/2008
From: Bristol
quote:

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army

222. The Limits of Control (2009, Jarmusch) - 4/5
An impulse visit to my local arthouse cinema today saw me sitting in the audience for this, Jarmusch's latest. Jarmusch takes on the spy/hitman sub-genre of action films and, in what could be considered a rather counter-productive move, removes all the action. However, what we're left with is a surprisingly comfortable, interesting portrayal of the repetition, routine and ridiculousness at the heart of the spy film. Isaach De Bankole's 'Lone Man' is a man of the old school of espionage/assassination/whatever - no guns, no mobiles, no sex while working, no emotion. His current mission - unclear; what we're shown of it is a series of meetings in coffee shops with various people, exchanging matchboxes, eating papers with codes on them, and receiving cryptic instructions to meet more people. The Limits of Control plays on Jarmusch's love of a vignette style of storytelling, with each meeting being able to be seen as a separate story connected with the others through an overarching theme and loose plot, and it works particularly well, with a fantastic ensemble cast including John Hurt, Hiam Abbass, Tilda Swinton, Gael Garcia Bernal, Luis Tosar and Youki Kudoh imparting views on science, film, painting, music and the source of the word "bohemian", all of which are connected by a theme of reality and the manipulation of it. Jarmusch analyses this theme exceptionally well, both interrogating it through his vignette style and using it to slyly poke fun at spy film tropes (at the end, when Bill Murray's American asks him how the hell he got into his compound, guarded by many men with rifles and fenced off with barbed wire and solid concrete walls, the Lone Man replies drolly, "I used my imagination"). This thematic discourse is given humanity by De Bankole, whose Bresson-esque performance may lack the emotion of, say, Johnny Depp in Dead Man, but his enigmatic presence is more interesting than Depp's in that film, and when he does show emotion, it reveals a man whose seeming ability to mould the world around him doesn't faze him one bit, and indeed, he is more human than most spies in the accepted spy canon. Christopher Doyle's cinematography is exquisite, as usual, and the music, while repetitive, isn't as grating as Neil Young's 'score' in Dead Man, and actual imbues the film with an intensity that the lackadaisical pace of the film belies. It's not a perfect film by any stretch of the imagination - any scene involving Paz de la Huerta is annoying to the point of anger, and considering she's following the Lone Man, that is a lot of scenes; and the film's slow pace did occasionally threaten to send me to sleep - but it's a far more interesting and successful study of theme and genre than Dead Man, and worthy of more praise than it has received.



Have you see Down By Law?


_____________________________

quote:

ORIGINAL: Miles Messervy 007

Child labour is necessary in the short term




(in reply to Pigeon Army)
Post #: 7351
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 1/11/2009 6:30:14 PM   
Harry Lime


Posts: 5147
Joined: 30/9/2005
Another new month so here's my latest update...

Naked (1993, Leigh)
The Asphalt Jungle (1950, Huston)
The Innocents (1961, Clayton)
Les quatre cents coups (1959, Truffaut)
Sciuscià (1946, De Sica)
A Taste Of Honey (1961, Richardson)
Les Diaboliques (1955, Clouzot)
JFK (1991, Stone)
Le mépris (1963, Godard)
Local Hero (1983, Forsyth)

There Will Be Blood (2007, Anderson)
The Invisible Man (1933, Whale)
Le souffle au coeur (1971, Malle)
F For Fake (1974, Welles)
The War Game (1965, Watkins)
Unforgiven (1992, Eastwood)
Whistle Down The Wind (1961, Forbes)
Alphaville, une étrange aventure de Lemmy Caution (1965, Godard)
Hobson's Choice (1953, Lean)
Du rififi chez les hommes (1955, Dassin)

Bob le flambeur (1956, Melville)
Peeping Tom (1960, Powell)
Trouble In Paradise (1932, Lubitsch)
Touchez pas au grisbi (1954, Becker)
Written On The Wind (1956, Sirk)
I Love You Again (1940, Van Dyke)
À bout de souffle (1959, Godard)
The Spiral Staircase (1945, Siodmak)
The Elephant Man (1980, Lynch)
Libelled Lady (1936, Conway)

Days Of Heaven (1978, Malick)
Céline et Julie vont en bateau (1974, Rivette)
Casque d'or (1952, Becker)
The Lady From Shanghai (1947, Welles)
Bande á part (1964, Godard)
Au revoir les enfants (1987, Malle)
Brick (2005, Johnson)
The Quiet Man (1952, Ford)
Network (1976, Lumet)
Jules et Jim (1962, Truffaut)

Låt den rätte komma in (2008, Alfredson)
Up (2009, Docter)
Once Upon A Time In America (1984, Leone)
Ascenseur pour l'echafaud (1958, Malle)
The Getaway (1972, Peckinpah)
It Happened One Night (1934, Capra)
Ugetsu Monogatari (1953, Mizoguchi)
Only Angels Have Wings (1939, Hawks)
To Be Or Not To Be (1942, Lubitsch)
The Taking Of Pelham One Two Three (1974, Sargent)

Ryan's Daughter (1970, Lean)
Love Crazy (1941, Conway)
Beyond The Valley Of The Dolls (1970, Meyer)
Pierrot le fou (1965, Godard)
12 Angry Men (1957, Lumet)
Funny Games (1997, Haneke)
In Bruges (2008, McDonagh)
The Fog of War: Eleven Lessons From The Life of Robert S. McNamara (2003, Morris)
Gregory's Girl (1981, Forsyth)
The Killer (1989, Woo)

Foreign Correspondent (1940, Hitchcock)
When The Wind Blows (1986, Murakami)
The Naked City (1948, Dassin)
Good Bye Lenin (2003, Becker)
Out Of The Blue (2006, Sarkies)
The Dresser (1983, Yates)
Night And The City (1950, Dassin)
Idioterne (1998, von Trier)
Batoru rowaiaru (2000, Fukasaku)
Salò o le 120 giornate di Sodoma (1975, Pasolini)

O Lucky Man! (1973, Anderson)
Wagon Master (1950, Ford)
Angel Face (1952, Preminger)
Le deuxième souffle (1966, Melville)
La Pianiste (2001, Haneke)
Milk (2008, Van Sant)
Hamlet (1996, Branagh)
Vivacious Lady (1938, Stevens)
Magnificent Obsession (1954, Sirk)
Pretty Baby (1978, Malle)

Le petit soldat (1963, Godard)
Anchorman: The Legend Of Ron Burgundy (2004, McKay)
Tirez sur le pianiste (1960, Truffaut)
Changeling (2008, Eastwood)
Ice Cold In Alex (1958, Thompson)
Ghost World (2001, Zwigoff)
28 Days Later... (2002, Boyle)
The Wrestler (2008, Aronofsky)
Silent Running (1972, Trumbull)
Spellbound (1945, Hitchcock)

Il Decameron (1971, Pasolini)
Le feu follet (1963, Malle)
The Cooler (2003, Kramer)
Frost / Nixon (2008, Howard)
Man On Wire (2008, Marsh)
Alfie (1966, Gilbert)
Une femme est une femme (1961, Godard)
Les Amants (1958, Malle)
The Devil And Daniel Webster (1941, Dieterle)
The Tales Of Hoffman (1951, Powell/ Pressburger)

Boomerang! (1947, Kazan)
Ai no corrida (1976, Ôshima)
Gran Torino (2008, Eastwood)
Vicky Cristina Barcelona (2008, Allen)
If I Had A Million (1932, Cruze/ Humberstone/ Lubitsch/ McLeod/ Roberts/ Seiter/ Taurog)
Wall-E (2008, Stanton)
L'air de Paris (1954, Carne)
The Deadly Companions (1961, Peckinpah)
Milou en mai (1990, Malle)
Mulholland Dr. (2001, Lynch)

Der Amerikanische Freund (1977, Wenders)
Atlantic City (1980, Malle)
Old School (2003, Phillips)
Revolutionary Road (2008, Mendes)
Starship Troopers (1997, Verhoeven)
Tabu (1931, Murnau)
I racconti di Canterbury (1972, Pasolini)
Sunshine (2007, Boyle)
Before Sunrise (1995, Linklater)
Harry Potter And The Half Blood Prince (2009, Yates)
District 9 (2009, Blomkamp)

Star Trek (2009, Abrams)
Lacombe Lucien (1974, Malle)
Cloverfield (2008, Reeves)
El Orfanato (2007, Bayona)
Appunti per un'Orestiade africana (1970, Pasolini)
The Duchess (2008, Dibb)
Slumdog Millionaire (2008, Boyle)
Bis ans Ende der Welt (1991, Wenders)
Dirty Dancing (1987, Ardolino)
Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid (1982, Reiner)

The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button (2008, Fincher)
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street (2007, Burton)
Cat Ballou (1965, Silverstein)
Things To Do In Denver When You're Dead (1995, Fleder)
Music And Lyrics (2007, Lawrence)
The Men Who Stare At Goats (2009, Heslov)
17 Again (2009, Steers)
State Of Play (2009, Macdonald)
Anne Of Green Gables (1934, Nichols Jr.)
Insomnia (2002, Nolan)Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa (2008, Darnell/ McGrath)

The Reader (2008, Daldry)
Enemy At The Gates (2001, Annaud)
Night Passage (1957, Neilson)
Les clan des Siciliens (1969, Verneuil)
Doubt (2008, Shanley)
The Great Dictator (1940, Chaplin)
Burn After Reading (2008, Coen/ Coen)
Zazie dans le métro (1960, Malle)
Kung Fu Panda (2008, Osbourne/ Stevenson)
Hancock (2008, Berg)

Night At The Museum (2006, Levy)
Mamma Mia (2008, Lloyd)
Tropic Thunder (2008, Stiller)
The Holiday (2006, Meyers)
Black Moon (1975, Malle)
27 Dresses (2009, Fletcher)
Twilight (2008, Hardwicke)
Wanted (2008, Berkmambetov)
She's The Man (2006, Fickman)
The Devil Wears Prada (2006, Frankel)

He's Just Not That Into You (2009, Kwapis)
Love Affair (1939, McCarey)
The Italian Job (2003, Gray)
Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back (2001, Smith)
Marley & Me (2008, Frankel)
Rachel Getting Married (2008, Demme)
X-Men: The Last Stand (2006, Ratner)
Angels And Demons (2009, Howard)
Inglourious Basterds (2009, Tarantino)
Resident Evil: Extinction (2007, Mulcahy)

All In The Game (2006, O'Hanlon)
X Files: I Want To Believe (2008, Carter)
Nacho Libre (2006, Hess)
High School Musical 3: Senior Year (2008, Ortega)
Halloween (2007, Zombie)
Point Of Origin (2002, Sigel)
Alien Vs Predator - Requiem (2007, Strause/ Strause)
Amityville III: The Demon (1983, Fleischer)


First Viewing

Films Viewed Per Decade

2000s - 72
1990s - 11
1980s - 12
1970s - 20
1960s - 20
1950s - 23
1940s - 12
1930s - 10
1920s - 0
1910s - 0
1900's - 0


Top Five Lead Actor Performances

Daniel Day-Lewis – There Will Be Blood
Albert Finney - The Dresser
William Holden - Network
Jean-Pierre Léaud – Les Quatre cent coups
David Thewlis - Naked


Top Five Lead Actress Performances

Isabelle Huppert – La Pianiste
Deborah Kerr – The Innocents
Susanne Lothar - Funny Games
Brooke Shields – Pretty Baby
Rita Tushingham – A Taste Of Honey


Top Five Supporting Actor Performances

Richard Harris – Unforgiven
Anthony Hopkins – The Elephant Man
Sam Jaffe - The Asphalt Jungle
Murray Melvin – A Taste Of Honey
Donald Sutherland – JFK


Top Five Supporting Actress Performances

Eileen Atkins - The Dresser
Dora Bryan – A Taste Of Honey
Jean Hagen – The Asphalt Jungle
Lea Massari - Le souffle au coeur
Lesley Sharp - Naked


Shorts (40 Minutes or less)

5

Partly Cloudy (2009, Sohn)

4

Cutting Moments (1997, Buck)
Les mistons (1957, Truffaut)


3

Charlotte et son Jules (1960, Godard)
The Musketeers Of Pig Alley (1913, Griffith)
Vive le tour (1962, Malle)


2

Bowl Of Oatmeal (1996, Post)
An Unseen Enemy (1912, Griffith)


1

Crack Dog (?, Kehoe)
Don't Nag Me (?, Healy/ Panaro)
The Principles Of Karma (1996, Wallace)


< Message edited by Harry Lime -- 30/11/2009 1:49:47 AM >


_____________________________

"People think I have an interesting walk. Hell, I'm just trying to hold my gut in."

If I get there early will it be the right time
our heaven is just waiting so put your hand into mine.

(in reply to Harry Lime)
Post #: 7352
RE: Top 100 Films I've Wathced This Year: 2009 - 1/11/2009 6:39:35 PM   
Rhubarb


Posts: 24508
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: No Direction Home

quote:

ORIGINAL: DCMaximo

229. Shark Attack 3: Megalodon (2002, Worth) 3/10
Between this, Manos: The Hands Of Fate and Troll 2, I've watched some glorious tat this year. Wonder if I've got time to track down Santa With Muscles before the year is out.


Don't forget Santa Claus Conquers The Martians!


quote:

ORIGINAL: FritzlFan

quote:

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army

222. The Limits of Control (2009, Jarmusch) - 4/5
An impulse visit to my local arthouse cinema today saw me sitting in the audience for this, Jarmusch's latest. Jarmusch takes on the spy/hitman sub-genre of action films and, in what could be considered a rather counter-productive move, removes all the action. However, what we're left with is a surprisingly comfortable, interesting portrayal of the repetition, routine and ridiculousness at the heart of the spy film. Isaach De Bankole's 'Lone Man' is a man of the old school of espionage/assassination/whatever - no guns, no mobiles, no sex while working, no emotion. His current mission - unclear; what we're shown of it is a series of meetings in coffee shops with various people, exchanging matchboxes, eating papers with codes on them, and receiving cryptic instructions to meet more people. The Limits of Control plays on Jarmusch's love of a vignette style of storytelling, with each meeting being able to be seen as a separate story connected with the others through an overarching theme and loose plot, and it works particularly well, with a fantastic ensemble cast including John Hurt, Hiam Abbass, Tilda Swinton, Gael Garcia Bernal, Luis Tosar and Youki Kudoh imparting views on science, film, painting, music and the source of the word "bohemian", all of which are connected by a theme of reality and the manipulation of it. Jarmusch analyses this theme exceptionally well, both interrogating it through his vignette style and using it to slyly poke fun at spy film tropes (at the end, when Bill Murray's American asks him how the hell he got into his compound, guarded by many men with rifles and fenced off with barbed wire and solid concrete walls, the Lone Man replies drolly, "I used my imagination"). This thematic discourse is given humanity by De Bankole, whose Bresson-esque performance may lack the emotion of, say, Johnny Depp in Dead Man, but his enigmatic presence is more interesting than Depp's in that film, and when he does show emotion, it reveals a man whose seeming ability to mould the world around him doesn't faze him one bit, and indeed, he is more human than most spies in the accepted spy canon. Christopher Doyle's cinematography is exquisite, as usual, and the music, while repetitive, isn't as grating as Neil Young's 'score' in Dead Man, and actual imbues the film with an intensity that the lackadaisical pace of the film belies. It's not a perfect film by any stretch of the imagination - any scene involving Paz de la Huerta is annoying to the point of anger, and considering she's following the Lone Man, that is a lot of scenes; and the film's slow pace did occasionally threaten to send me to sleep - but it's a far more interesting and successful study of theme and genre than Dead Man, and worthy of more praise than it has received.



Have you see Down By Law?



Or Stranger Than Paradise?

Also Limits seems to have just vanished in the UK. Anyone know if there is any plan of release so i can revive my JJ thread?

_____________________________

Team Ginge
WWLD?


quote:

ORIGINAL: FritzlFan

You organisational skills sicken me, Rhubarb.



(in reply to DCMaximo)
Post #: 7353
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 1/11/2009 6:46:00 PM   
Deviation


Posts: 27284
Joined: 2/6/2006
From: Enemies of Film HQ
quote:

ORIGINAL: Harry Lime


Il Decameron (1971, Pasolini)
The Devil And Daniel Webster (1941, Dieterle)
Ai no corrida (1976, Ôshima)
Wall-E (2008, Stanton)

Mulholland Dr. (2001, Lynch)
Starship Troopers (1997, Verhoeven)
I racconti di Canterbury (1972, Pasolini)
El Orfanato (2007, Bayona)



These stand out, what did you think of these Harry? (you'd better like Starship Troopers or I'll hurt you)

_____________________________

quote:

ORIGINAL: Dpp1978
There are certainly times where calling a person a cunt is not only reasonable, it is a gross understatement.

quote:


ORIGINAL: elab49
I really wish I could go down to see Privates

(in reply to Harry Lime)
Post #: 7354
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 1/11/2009 6:59:08 PM   
Rhubarb


Posts: 24508
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: No Direction Home
October for me

26 Metropolis
32 Down By Law
35 I'm Not There
43 La Vita e Bella*
47 Live and Let Die
63 Sunrise*
87 Up*
88 In The Loop*
90 Way of the Dragon*
94 Monty Python: Almost The Truth
99 Point Break
104 Children of Men
113 Ghostbusters
120 The Imaginarium of Doctor Panassus*
124 Transporter 3
128 Iron Monkey*
135 Dead Snow*
153 A Bugs Life
155 Saw
167 Saw II
188 Blade Runner
197 Thirst*
202 Flash Gordon
209 School of Rock*
228 Hamlet 2
230 Fantastic Mr Fox*
268 Star Wars Ep II
283 Crank 2: High Voltage*
290 Pandorum*


Shorts

8 Stop Look and Hasten
15 Zoom at the Top
23 Sugar and Spies
42 Partly Cloudy*


And the sharp end of my director league table

1. Chuck Jones 20 (17)
2. Jean-Luc Godard 8 (7)
3 John Carpenter 8 (6)
4 Sam Raimi 7 (6)
5 Charlie Chaplin 6 (6)
6 Fritz Frelang 5 (5)
7. Buster Keaton 5 (4)
8. Werner Herzog 4 (4)
=Orson Welles 4 (4)
= Robert McKimerson 4 (4)
= Martin Scorsese 4 (4)
= Stanley Kubrick 4 (4)
= Woody Allen 4 (4)

13 Sidney Lumet 4 (3)
= Terry Gilliam 4 (3)
15 John Woo 3 (3)
= Nick Broomfield 3 (3)
= Terrence Young 3 (3)
= Georges Mélies 3 (3)
= Todd Haynes 3 (3)
= Richard Linklater 3 (3)
= Darren Aronofsky 3 (3)
= Ridley Scott 3 (3)
= Stephen Frears 3 (3)


_____________________________

Team Ginge
WWLD?


quote:

ORIGINAL: FritzlFan

You organisational skills sicken me, Rhubarb.



(in reply to Deviation)
Post #: 7355
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 1/11/2009 7:13:28 PM   
Piles


Posts: 5545
Joined: 6/8/2007
From: Whalley Range
Breaking the Waves (1996, Lars von Trier)
"Breaking the Waves” is the story of Bess (Emily Watson), a strange and outcast young woman who finally finds herself a husband in Jan Nyman (Stellan Skarsgard). However, when an accident renders Jan paralyzed, she's encouraged to find herself another sexual partner (or several), which – bizarrely – appears to make Jan better. This is the second von Trier film I've seen, behind the masterpiece that is "Antichrist”, and I'm happen to see that it is of a similarly high standard. "Breaking the Waves” is an excellent piece of cinema, discussing sexual deviancy, the perils of organized religion, and the lengths that one will go for love. It's a very personal and emotional film, mostly centred around the central relationship of Jan and Bess, and how they complete one another in an enlightening and uplifting manner. The second half of the film sees a huge tonal shift, and things go from the happy to the bizarre, allowing von Trier to examine the more controversial subjects that the film takes a look at. Perhaps most interesting, though, is its take on religion in its extremities, and the rituals and processes which some polarizing sects of Christianity take part in. In this way, it's a more effective re-make of Anthony Schaffer's "the Wicker Man” than any Nic Cage film will ever be, discussing the dark side of religion on a remote (and coincidentally Scottish) setting. The performances are universally sublime, particularly those of Emily Watson – who is reminiscent of "La Strada”s Guieletta Masina in her flitting between laughter and tears – and Stellan Skarsgard. The effect of the latter's physical presence disappearing from the film is nothing short of startling. It only falls short in its final image, which continues the film's weird and wonderful tone and philosophy, but feels a little too happy and a little too deliberately different. A sombre, sobering ending would have been much more affecting, and would have finished off the film in the same manner in which it begins. 5/5.

Kes (1968, Kenneth Loach)
Kes is the story of a boy named Billy Caspar (David Bradley) and his pet kestrel. He's oppressed and looked down upon by his peers, his family, and his teachers. He's down and out, but he finds a little bit of hope in his new pet, which he trains to do an array of trick. He's only happy when he's around the bird, but when that gets taken away from him he has nothing. To see his brother Jud (Freddie Fletcher) kill the bird – an act that, out of context, doesn't exactly seem too evil – is one of the most heartbreaking moments in film, and boosts this film up to classic status. Sure, the end may be brutal, but "Kes” is also uplifting in turns. To see the boy become more and more confident in his own shoes, gain a mentor, and teach this bird to do an array of humorous and impressive tricks is a touching stretch of celluloid, and it's played out with realism by a director who is clearly understanding of emotion and of people. It's possible Ken Loach's best film to date, a poetic love letter to the working class families of northern England. Billy's oppression wears us down, and the finale is the ultimate knockout punch. It's not just about the death of a bird; it's about the crushing of a boy's feelings and the dashing of his last hope for inclusion. Although his peers and family control him – telling him what to do and how to do it – he is in charge when he's with the bird. He's the one who gets to say what and how and where, and when he's alone with it it's the only time he can feel himself. Without the bird, his confidence will plummet further, and Loach's crowning achievement is cutting away from the film just before this further loss of confidence happens... as if it's too painful for even him to watch. 4/5.

THE IMAGINARIUM OF DR PARNASSUS (2009, Terry Gilliam)
Contrary to what some quieter-than-last-year internet murmurings would imply, this will not yield post-humus Oscar number two for Heath Ledger. In fact, when you compare it with two of Ledger's defining performances, in Nolan's superhero adventure and in Ang Lee's "Brokeback Mountain”, Parnassus is an underwhelming film. And that's not a word I thought I would be using in this review, because Gilliam's latest is an endearing, vibrant, and challenging film that makes an incredible impression. But, in truth, Ledger isn't the main reason for it being so. At times, the performance seems cluttered, and it's nowhere near the standard that you'd expect – or rather hope – to see in Ledger's last film. But, fortunately, Ledger isn't the main reason that you should see this film. Go for Gilliam, and for Christopher Plummer. Plummer, as the titular doctor, is outstanding. His Parnassus is an aging, bewildered man, too lost in his own thought to truly understand what is going on around him, and too concerned with the world to really look after himself. It's a very melancholy performance, and one that is hardly overflowing with smiles and positivity. I haven't seen enough of Plummer's work to call this his best role, but his unseen films will have a way to go to match the gravitas and reflective melancholy of Dr Parnassus. And then there are the three men who took over from Ledger in order to finish the film off. Their presence is probably one of the main reasons for Ledger's performance failing, because the film's supposed star – and the man who it is dedicated to – does not get to play a part in his three best scenes. It's Johnny Depp who really stands out amongst the three, perfectly made for a short but inspired turn as the first re-incarnation of Tony, channelling Captain Jack Sparrow and Isembard Crane to become a key part of perhaps the film's best sequence. Jude Law and Colin Farrell aren't quite as impressive, but you can just imagine what Ledger – letting his kooky and inventive side out – would have done with these small snippets of surrealist genius. And then there's Terry Gilliam. I'm a fan of the director, particularly because of his three previous masterworks. There's "Twelve Monkeys”, the Bruce Willis time travel sci-fi, "Brazil”, the dystopian satire, and "Monty Python's Flying Circus”, which pretty much speaks for itself. If I had to compare this, his latest film, to one of his previous ones, it wouldn't be a film at all. It would be the short animated sequences that link together the sketch comedy in Gilliam's big break. They host the same nonsensical, whimsical surrealism, just with a thousand times the budget. It's probably the first time that Gilliam has let himself loose and completely disappeared down the rabbit hole since he worked on Flying Circus, and although "Fear and Loathing” hosted some pretty messy scenes, none of them compare to what we get within the Imaginarium of Terry Gilliam, by way of Dr Parnassus. 4/5.

FANTASTIC MR FOX (2009, Wes Anderson)
Over the last ten or fifteen years, Anderson has been making good films, with the odd great one here and there, and for the most part has done without really drawing the eye of the press, especially in Britain. Chances are that even the most film illiterate person in Britain will have seen a Wes Anderson film without realizing it's a Wes Anderson film, whether that is "the Life Aquatic” or "the Royal Tenenbaums” or one of his other semi-well-known films. However, the release of "the Fantastic Mr Fox” has brought with it some widespread notoriety, but not as the man who makes good, quirky, and genuinely original films, but one who has turned Roald Dahl's characters into Americans. It's a shame, then, that most of the die-hard fans of Dahl's book will either not bother to see this film, or will dislike it purely for superficial reasons. I haven't read Dahl's book, and it could well be a more agreeable experience than Wes Anderson's "the Fantastic Fox”, but accents aren't the reason to dislike it. Because, if you're willing to look past such ridiculous complaints, what you'll find is a sweet, different, and unconventional animation that brings heart, humour, and originality to the screen. Let's begin with the heart, which is here in bucket loads. The film generally preaches family values, like the importance of a solid father-son relationship, or how trust between a husband and wife is the basis of a sturdy relationship. When the film isn't rollicking from one bizarre/funny/original/unfathomable scene to the next, it's most likely talking about family, and how blood runs far thicker than water. And then there's the originality. The type of animation alone is different to almost everything you're likely to see in a cinema this year. Whilst "Up” – released earlier this month, and probably a little better than this film – is a glossy, stylized, 3D-friendly spectacle, "the Fantastic Mr Fox” returns to relatively defunct technology. It utilizes stop motion animation, the quirky and jerky motions of the characters only adding the endearing and amiable quality that the film possesses. It feels like Jan Svankmajer by way of Henry Sellick, with the humour of Pixar and the heart of Ghibli thrown in for good measure. This style helps out with some of the film's most weird and wonderful scenes, particularly the opening chicken-heist and the farmer-raid-dance (which is accompanied by a Jarvis Cocker track), and without this jerkiness it wouldn't feel quite the innovative, imaginative, and original film that it is. 4/5.

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004, Alfonso Cuaron)
I would be lying if I said that the Harry Potter series was any good, or worthy of the widespread attention that it has garnered. That's the films, not the books, because there's no denying that they have become children's classics, and – growing up with them, from the age of ten when the first book came out – I've grown to really enjoy them. They aren't literary milestones, sure, but they are as good as children's literature is likely to get in the early twenty first century. It's a shame, then, that the films are so underwhelming, with the exception, that is, of Alfonso Cuaron's envisioning of the third instalment, "the Prisoner of Azkaban”. Even then, though, it's far from a perfect film, with flaws dotted here, there, and everywhere. The performances of the three children are by far the weakest in the films, which is a shame, as they're on screen for the majority of its runtime. Daniel Radcliffe is an abomination, and everything that he says grinds and annoys. With a different lead actor, the films could have been quite passable, but his presence alone is enough to put me off. Emma Watson is even worse, overacting everything and only seemingly managing to capture one facial expression for the entire two hours. Rupert Grint is the most acceptable, but even he is a fair cry short of the rest of the adult cast, which is consistently great. Alan Rickman, Michael Gambon (taking over from the late Richard Harris, and capturing Dumbledore much better than the legend that is Harris ever managed too), Daniel Thewlis, Gary Oldman, Richard Griffiths, Maggie Smith, Timothy Spall and Julie Walters are all worthy of praise, but it's just a shame that they have to share the screen with a trio of such unimaginative and uninspired youngsters. The ending half hour, though, transfers the most intelligent passage in the book perfectly onto screen, and the Peter Pettigrew twist is one of the only truly shocking twists of the first half of the series. 3/5.

Austin Powers: the Spy Who Shagged Me (1999, Jay Roach)
Sir Austin Danger Powers, KBE, is back to solve another mystery, this time revolving around, uh, Dr Evil again. This time around, Evil is planning to place a giant laser beam on the moon and to methodically and systematically take out the world's major cities unless the US authorities pay him an extortionate amount of money. Inferior to the original but superior to the threequel, "the Spy Who Shagged Me” is typical sequel fair, stretching material that should really only work over one film into a second instalment. The creative team (Roach and co-writers Mike Myers and Michael McCullers) re-use the same jokes from the original, and will go on to use them again in "Goldmember”, and remain firmly in their comfort zone to the slender and acceptable running time. There are even some funny bits, most notable of which is when Austin and Basil tell us not to worry about the complexities of time travel, and just to sit back and enjoy ourselves. For the most part, though, it's pretty forgettable, and at times goes a fair way to tarnish what actually was funny in the first film. Fart and scat humour can only go so far, and I guess Roach, Myers and co found their limit at the end of the original Powers movie. The performances pull it through, though. Myers commits himself one hundred per cent in three roles, two of which are genius and one of which is a humongous (quite literally, actually) mistake, and for the most part reminds us – after the dreadful "Love Guru” – why we found him funny in the first place. Heather Graham does her job admirably, performing with enough sultriness to explain why Austin wants to settle down again so soon. Most impressive, though, is the support, particularly Wagner and Lowe (as Number Two aged old and young), Seth Green, and Will Ferrel – who pops up in one of his better performances, despite it being only five minutes long. 2/5.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007, David Yates)
Almost all of the Harry Potter films are uninspiring to say the least, with the exception of Cuaron's third instalment, and – when going into the screening of this film for the first time – I feared for the fifth film. The book is possibly the worst of all the Potter books, and its wedge-like presence on all book cases is only surpassed by Tolstoy's "War and Peace”. So many words are dedicated to not very much of actual importance happening at all, and more than a few of my friends gave up on the Potter novel series at this stage. It's a good thing, then, that Yates – who has been commissioned (over Guillermo del Toro, I might add) to do the final three Potter films – managed to tighten the film down, and it is in fact the shortest of the series to date. Standing in at just over two hours, it is punchy enough to allow you to overlook the lack of dramatic prowess and narrative. The final battles are well put on screen, and for the most part it's watchable enough. However, there are a hell of a lot of flaws here, and most of them are the same as in the previous four entries. You would have thought that the creative team behind the Potter film series would have learned, by now, but they haven't. Radcliffe and Watson are still annoying and whiny, this time with added misplaced teenage angst, and only Grint of the three remains watchable. The adults are on screen for a criminally low amount of time, particularly Alan Rickman, who perennially remains the best thing about the film series in spite of his lack of presence. Joining him under the banner of misused adult talent are Gambon, Smith, Thompson, Gleeson, Fiennes (who is the perfect Lord Voldemort), Walters, Oldman, Thewlis, Staunton, Isaacs, and doubtlessly more that I'm forgetting. It's still better than the fourth film, though, which is a relief. 2/5.

< Message edited by Piles -- 1/11/2009 7:15:27 PM >


_____________________________

Top 100 Moz Songs / Top 100 Films

(in reply to Rhubarb)
Post #: 7356
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 1/11/2009 7:35:51 PM   
Deviation


Posts: 27284
Joined: 2/6/2006
From: Enemies of Film HQ
quote:

ORIGINAL: Piles

Breaking the Waves (1996, Lars von Trier)
The performances are universally sublime, particularly those of Emily Watson – who is reminiscent of "La Strada”s Guieletta Masina in her flitting between laughter and tears – 5/5.




Watching La Strada recently Breaking the Wavesa and this definitely came to mind.

And more positive reviews for Dr. parnassus, YAY!!!!

_____________________________

quote:

ORIGINAL: Dpp1978
There are certainly times where calling a person a cunt is not only reasonable, it is a gross understatement.

quote:


ORIGINAL: elab49
I really wish I could go down to see Privates

(in reply to Piles)
Post #: 7357
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 1/11/2009 8:36:52 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54583
Joined: 1/10/2005
Except Watson's is a truly exceptional performance

Films noted/Reviewed for October 

That Sinking Feeling isn't included below because of the obscenity that is the DVD release.

Shadow of a Doubt (Hitchcock, 1943)
Up (Doctor/Petersen, 2009)
Oldboy (Park, 2003)
Dog Soldiers (Marshall, 2002)
Charlie Chan at the Opera (HUmberstone, 1936)
Murder She Said (Pollock, 1961)
The Mist (Darabont, 2007)
House With Laughing Windows (Avati, 1976)
Zombieland (Fleischer, 2009)
The Ghost Ship (Robson, 1943)
Get Smart (Segal, 2008) Again.
Arsenal Stadium Mystery (Dickinson, 1940)
Monsters Inc (Doctor/Silverman, 2001)
War Inc (Seftel, 2008)
The Chaser (Na, 2008)
Charlie Chan in Paris (Seiler, 1935)
Scarifies (Sarkies, 1999)
Kanzo Sensei (Imamura, 1998)
Amsterdamned (Maas, 1988)
State of Play (MacDonald, 2009)
Riot in Cell Block 11 (Siegel, 1954)
Dead Snow (Wirkola, 2009)
Oyster Farmer (Reeves, 2004)
Death Laid an Egg (Questi, 1968)
Profondo Rosso (Argento, 1975)
Boys of St Vincent/Boys of St Vincent 15 Years Later (Smith, 1992/1993)
Running Man (Glaser, 1987)
The Bird With The Crystal Plummage (Argento, 1970)
Trick 'r Treat (Dougherty, 2008)
Tropic Thunder (Stiller, 2008)
Rocknrolla (Ritchie, 2008)
9 (Acker, 2009)
Eagle Eye (Caruso, 2008)
What Just Happened (Levinson, 2008)
Surrogates (Mostow, 2009)

_____________________________

Lips Together and Blow - blogtasticness and Glasgow Film Festival GFF13!

quote:

ORIGINAL: Deviation] LIKE AMERICA'S SWEETHEARTS TOO. IT MADE ME LAUGH A LOT AND THOUGHT IT WAS WITTY. ALSO I FEEL SLOWLY DYING INSIDE. I KEEP AGREEING WITH ELAB.


Annual Poll 2013 - All Lists Welcome

(in reply to Deviation)
Post #: 7358
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 1/11/2009 9:17:06 PM   
Deviation


Posts: 27284
Joined: 2/6/2006
From: Enemies of Film HQ


_____________________________

quote:

ORIGINAL: Dpp1978
There are certainly times where calling a person a cunt is not only reasonable, it is a gross understatement.

quote:


ORIGINAL: elab49
I really wish I could go down to see Privates

(in reply to elab49)
Post #: 7359
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 1/11/2009 9:23:42 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54583
Joined: 1/10/2005
That could mean soooo many things

_____________________________

Lips Together and Blow - blogtasticness and Glasgow Film Festival GFF13!

quote:

ORIGINAL: Deviation] LIKE AMERICA'S SWEETHEARTS TOO. IT MADE ME LAUGH A LOT AND THOUGHT IT WAS WITTY. ALSO I FEEL SLOWLY DYING INSIDE. I KEEP AGREEING WITH ELAB.


Annual Poll 2013 - All Lists Welcome

(in reply to Deviation)
Post #: 7360
RE: Top 100 Films I've Wathced This Year: 2009 - 1/11/2009 10:10:35 PM   
Pigeon Army


Posts: 14612
Joined: 29/1/2006
From: Pixar HQ, George Lucas' Office.
quote:

ORIGINAL: Rhubarb

quote:

ORIGINAL: FritzlFan

quote:

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army

222. The Limits of Control (2009, Jarmusch) - 4/5
An impulse visit to my local arthouse cinema today saw me sitting in the audience for this, Jarmusch's latest. Jarmusch takes on the spy/hitman sub-genre of action films and, in what could be considered a rather counter-productive move, removes all the action. However, what we're left with is a surprisingly comfortable, interesting portrayal of the repetition, routine and ridiculousness at the heart of the spy film. Isaach De Bankole's 'Lone Man' is a man of the old school of espionage/assassination/whatever - no guns, no mobiles, no sex while working, no emotion. His current mission - unclear; what we're shown of it is a series of meetings in coffee shops with various people, exchanging matchboxes, eating papers with codes on them, and receiving cryptic instructions to meet more people. The Limits of Control plays on Jarmusch's love of a vignette style of storytelling, with each meeting being able to be seen as a separate story connected with the others through an overarching theme and loose plot, and it works particularly well, with a fantastic ensemble cast including John Hurt, Hiam Abbass, Tilda Swinton, Gael Garcia Bernal, Luis Tosar and Youki Kudoh imparting views on science, film, painting, music and the source of the word "bohemian", all of which are connected by a theme of reality and the manipulation of it. Jarmusch analyses this theme exceptionally well, both interrogating it through his vignette style and using it to slyly poke fun at spy film tropes (at the end, when Bill Murray's American asks him how the hell he got into his compound, guarded by many men with rifles and fenced off with barbed wire and solid concrete walls, the Lone Man replies drolly, "I used my imagination"). This thematic discourse is given humanity by De Bankole, whose Bresson-esque performance may lack the emotion of, say, Johnny Depp in Dead Man, but his enigmatic presence is more interesting than Depp's in that film, and when he does show emotion, it reveals a man whose seeming ability to mould the world around him doesn't faze him one bit, and indeed, he is more human than most spies in the accepted spy canon. Christopher Doyle's cinematography is exquisite, as usual, and the music, while repetitive, isn't as grating as Neil Young's 'score' in Dead Man, and actual imbues the film with an intensity that the lackadaisical pace of the film belies. It's not a perfect film by any stretch of the imagination - any scene involving Paz de la Huerta is annoying to the point of anger, and considering she's following the Lone Man, that is a lot of scenes; and the film's slow pace did occasionally threaten to send me to sleep - but it's a far more interesting and successful study of theme and genre than Dead Man, and worthy of more praise than it has received.



Have you see Down By Law?



Or Stranger Than Paradise?



I've seen neither. Dead Man, half-decent though it was, sort of made me reluctant to pursue Jarmusch for a while, but Limits has made me more interested in seeing the man's work.


_____________________________

quote:

ORIGINAL: Rinc
She's supposed to be 13! I'd want her to be very attractive though


quote:

ORIGINAL: MonsterCat
quote:

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army
Stop being mean to Deviation

No.

(in reply to Rhubarb)
Post #: 7361
RE: Top 100 Films I've Wathced This Year: 2009 - 1/11/2009 10:11:12 PM   
DCMaximo


Posts: 992
Joined: 5/1/2007
From: Nottingham via Aidy Boothroyd's Palace of Wisdom

quote:

ORIGINAL: Rhubarb


quote:

ORIGINAL: DCMaximo

229. Shark Attack 3: Megalodon (2002, Worth) 3/10
Between this, Manos: The Hands Of Fate and Troll 2, I've watched some glorious tat this year. Wonder if I've got time to track down Santa With Muscles before the year is out.


Don't forget Santa Claus Conquers The Martians!



Already got it on DVD , saving it as a festive treat for my housemate and I

_____________________________

The Spanish Inquisition of the 'Get Carlton Banks a TV Spin-off' Association

"Carlotta was the kind of town where they spell trouble T-R-U-B-I-L, and if you try to correct them, they kill you"

(in reply to Rhubarb)
Post #: 7362
RE: Top 100 Films I've Wathced This Year: 2009 - 2/11/2009 12:29:58 AM   
Rhubarb


Posts: 24508
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: No Direction Home

quote:

ORIGINAL: DCMaximo


quote:

ORIGINAL: Rhubarb


quote:

ORIGINAL: DCMaximo

229. Shark Attack 3: Megalodon (2002, Worth) 3/10
Between this, Manos: The Hands Of Fate and Troll 2, I've watched some glorious tat this year. Wonder if I've got time to track down Santa With Muscles before the year is out.


Don't forget Santa Claus Conquers The Martians!



Already got it on DVD , saving it as a festive treat for my housemate and I


Legendary



quote:

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army

quote:

ORIGINAL: Rhubarb

quote:

ORIGINAL: FritzlFan

quote:

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army

222. The Limits of Control (2009, Jarmusch) - 4/5
An impulse visit to my local arthouse cinema today saw me sitting in the audience for this, Jarmusch's latest. Jarmusch takes on the spy/hitman sub-genre of action films and, in what could be considered a rather counter-productive move, removes all the action. However, what we're left with is a surprisingly comfortable, interesting portrayal of the repetition, routine and ridiculousness at the heart of the spy film. Isaach De Bankole's 'Lone Man' is a man of the old school of espionage/assassination/whatever - no guns, no mobiles, no sex while working, no emotion. His current mission - unclear; what we're shown of it is a series of meetings in coffee shops with various people, exchanging matchboxes, eating papers with codes on them, and receiving cryptic instructions to meet more people. The Limits of Control plays on Jarmusch's love of a vignette style of storytelling, with each meeting being able to be seen as a separate story connected with the others through an overarching theme and loose plot, and it works particularly well, with a fantastic ensemble cast including John Hurt, Hiam Abbass, Tilda Swinton, Gael Garcia Bernal, Luis Tosar and Youki Kudoh imparting views on science, film, painting, music and the source of the word "bohemian", all of which are connected by a theme of reality and the manipulation of it. Jarmusch analyses this theme exceptionally well, both interrogating it through his vignette style and using it to slyly poke fun at spy film tropes (at the end, when Bill Murray's American asks him how the hell he got into his compound, guarded by many men with rifles and fenced off with barbed wire and solid concrete walls, the Lone Man replies drolly, "I used my imagination"). This thematic discourse is given humanity by De Bankole, whose Bresson-esque performance may lack the emotion of, say, Johnny Depp in Dead Man, but his enigmatic presence is more interesting than Depp's in that film, and when he does show emotion, it reveals a man whose seeming ability to mould the world around him doesn't faze him one bit, and indeed, he is more human than most spies in the accepted spy canon. Christopher Doyle's cinematography is exquisite, as usual, and the music, while repetitive, isn't as grating as Neil Young's 'score' in Dead Man, and actual imbues the film with an intensity that the lackadaisical pace of the film belies. It's not a perfect film by any stretch of the imagination - any scene involving Paz de la Huerta is annoying to the point of anger, and considering she's following the Lone Man, that is a lot of scenes; and the film's slow pace did occasionally threaten to send me to sleep - but it's a far more interesting and successful study of theme and genre than Dead Man, and worthy of more praise than it has received.



Have you see Down By Law?



Or Stranger Than Paradise?



I've seen neither. Dead Man, half-decent though it was, sort of made me reluctant to pursue Jarmusch for a while, but Limits has made me more interested in seeing the man's work.



I'd say they are the two to see. Ghost Dog is rather liked too, especially by Dantes.

_____________________________

Team Ginge
WWLD?


quote:

ORIGINAL: FritzlFan

You organisational skills sicken me, Rhubarb.



(in reply to DCMaximo)
Post #: 7363
RE: Top 100 Films I've Wathced This Year: 2009 - 2/11/2009 5:36:13 AM   
Dantes Inferno


Posts: 5887
Joined: 27/10/2007
From: Norway
Ghost Dog! Coolest film ever!

_____________________________

President of The Wire fan club. PM me to join.

(in reply to Rhubarb)
Post #: 7364
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 2/11/2009 11:43:06 AM   
Gram123

 

Posts: 5537
Joined: 19/1/2006
From: Reino Unido
quote:

ORIGINAL: Piles
THE IMAGINARIUM OF DR PARNASSUS (2009, Terry Gilliam)
[...] It's Johnny Depp who really stands out amongst the three, perfectly made for a short but inspired turn as the first re-incarnation of Tony, channelling Captain Jack Sparrow and Isembard Crane to become a key part of perhaps the film's best sequence.


Or Ichabod, perhaps!

_____________________________

Gram123's Top Songs Project

(in reply to Piles)
Post #: 7365
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 2/11/2009 12:32:43 PM   
Gram123

 

Posts: 5537
Joined: 19/1/2006
From: Reino Unido
098) Ghost Town  (David Koepp, USA, 2008) - 6.0
Run of the mill rom-com-with-a-supernatural-element. I know a lot of people here don't, but I quite like Ricky Gervais. However, just like with Simon Pegg, something feels wrong when a British comedian takes a lead role in a quite standard Hollywood film and doesn't have any hand in the writing. I presume (and hope) that Cemetery Junction will work better and feel a lot more natural, a la Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz.

Beyond Gervais, Greg Kinnear is rather annoying (as usual) and Téa Leoni is only just this side of dreadful. But the humour's alright and it was a fair, untaxing way to spend 90 minutes. Hard to seperate this from the other rom-com-with-a-supernatural-element that I watched recently, Yes Man, so it gets a similar rating and placement.


116) The Uninvited  (Charles Guard & Thomas Guard, USA, 2009) - 5.0
I didn't realise this was a remake of Kim Ji-woon's A Tale of Two Sisters, one of only a few East Asian horrors I really like, when I rented it. Had I known, I almost certianly wouldn't have bothered, as I'm not the biggest fan of these money-spinning remakes. A few minutes in and it dawned on me, though annoyingly there's nothing on the DVD cover alluding to the fact, and I cite this failing, plus the title change as my excuse.

The remake was ok, but no more than that. Knowing the twist in advance rather spoiled things. The execution of the plot was significantly less affecting than the original and the shocks had less impact (it was a PG-13 in the US). It's been a while since I watched the original, but from what I recall, the key plot changes such as the presence of Mildred's ghostly victims were not for the better. The young Emily Browning was pretty good as lead Anna, though I didn't like Arielle Kebbel's performance as her sister, Elizabeth Banks as stepmom Rachel, or Jesse Moss as Anna's boyfriend. And David Stathairn had practically nothing to do as Anna's father.

So another East Asian film that didn't need to be remade by American studios, and certainly didn't benefit from it. The likes of Roy Lee and Schuyler Moore have a lot to answer for.

Oh, one final point on this - I saw this fantastically insightful review of the film on IMDb, which I figured was worth sharing!:
quote:


9/10
the only good thing in the movie was the older sister she was so hot it was good i guess not really but whatever i want to bang that one girl it was good that older sister needs to be in my bed i liked the movie that girl should have had a naked part she was hot she was very hot i think i will move into her neighbors house so she can come in my room every night okay yea i'm going to start packing right now she is hot the movie sucked now that i think about it thats only because there was no naked scene if there was it would have been the greatest movie ever made but as soon as i move she have right up in my room but that girl is hot i can't wait she shes in my bed waiting for me



< Message edited by Gram123 -- 2/11/2009 12:34:03 PM >


_____________________________

Gram123's Top Songs Project

(in reply to Gram123)
Post #: 7366
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 2/11/2009 4:44:47 PM   
DCMaximo


Posts: 992
Joined: 5/1/2007
From: Nottingham via Aidy Boothroyd's Palace of Wisdom
quote:

ORIGINAL: Gram123

Oh, one final point on this - I saw this fantastically insightful review of the film on IMDb, which I figured was worth sharing!:
quote:


9/10
the only good thing in the movie was the older sister she was so hot it was good i guess not really but whatever i want to bang that one girl it was good that older sister needs to be in my bed i liked the movie that girl should have had a naked part she was hot she was very hot i think i will move into her neighbors house so she can come in my room every night okay yea i'm going to start packing right now she is hot the movie sucked now that i think about it thats only because there was no naked scene if there was it would have been the greatest movie ever made but as soon as i move she have right up in my room but that girl is hot i can't wait she shes in my bed waiting for me




Brilliant, can we somehow invite them onto the forum? I'd love to read their top 100 thread.

_____________________________

The Spanish Inquisition of the 'Get Carlton Banks a TV Spin-off' Association

"Carlotta was the kind of town where they spell trouble T-R-U-B-I-L, and if you try to correct them, they kill you"

(in reply to Gram123)
Post #: 7367
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 3/11/2009 1:26:34 AM   
Harry Lime


Posts: 5147
Joined: 30/9/2005
quote:

ORIGINAL: Deviation
quote:

ORIGINAL: Harry Lime

Il Decameron (1971, Pasolini)
The Devil And Daniel Webster (1941, Dieterle)
Ai no corrida (1976, Ôshima)
Wall-E (2008, Stanton)

Mulholland Dr. (2001, Lynch)
Starship Troopers (1997, Verhoeven)
I racconti di Canterbury (1972, Pasolini)
El Orfanato (2007, Bayona)

These stand out, what did you think of these Harry? (you'd better like Starship Troopers or I'll hurt you)

Well, I spoke about El Orfanato earlier. It's one I think I need to watch again. It's got a lot of admirers but, whilst I can't say that I disliked it, it didn't leave much of an impression on me.
 
And yes, you can put those brass knuckles away Dev, I do like Starship Troopers. It doesn't come close to the satirical genius of Verhoeven's Robocop but it is still a mighty enjoyable romp with a great camp turn from Michael Ironside.
 
Wall-E is also very good, although it doesn't quite live up to its truly wonderful opening half-an-hour. There are lots of great ideas floating around but it does just go on that little bit too long.
 
Again, Mulholland Dr. is nowhere near David Lynch's best work, but it inevitably still has plenty to offer; particularly the sensational central performance of Naomi Watts. The audition sequence is phenomenol.
 
The Devil And Daniel Webster is also well worth checking it out. It gets a bit preachy in places but it has the imagination to pull it off, especially in the final third. It doesn't help that James Craig and Anne Shirley are a bit bland in the leads, however the support cast (including Simone Simon, HB Warner, Gene Lockhart and John Ford regulars Jane Darwell and John Qualen) really makes up for any inadequacies in that department. And it's the brilliant Walter Huston and the folksy Edward Arnold, as the eponymous combatants, who bring the film to life.
 
As for Ai no corrida, it still has the power to shock even today. It is explicit, twisted and more than once strays beyond the, ahem, realm of intellectual provocation and into gratuitous pornography. There were moments that I sat there and thought "I am hating this" but then the film ends and, much like Saló o le 120 giornate di Sodoma, you've realised that you've watched something operating on a deeply fascinating level. Saló is far more challenging though. And far more horrifying!
 
Which brings me to the Pasolini films. Hmmm. It's hard to love Pasolini. I admire him immensely, but I find it hard to love him. His visual sense is beautiful. His humour somehow suceeds in being both broad and subtle at the same time. His satircal barbs cut to the bone. Yet there is a sense that he revels just a little bit too much in the "enfant terrible" tag that he acquired through his writing and his films. This is apparent in both Il Decameron and I racconti di Canterbury. As much as I appreciate the bawdy nature of the source material, for long periods both films tend to descend into little more than a series of vignettes that involve increasingly elaborate ploys to cuckold fat husbands or shrewish wives. Of course, there is always an admirable sense of satirical mischief-making underlying these sequences but whilst some work, others do not.
 
Il Decameron is the far more balanced work, with its knockabout opening sequence (involving a sabotaged privvy and tomb-robbing) as well as the story of gardener and the nunnery both hitting the mark. However, the highlight has to be the strangely sweet tale of the young lovers who steal a night under the stars. It's a beautiful moment. I racconti di Canterbury doesn't hang quite so well but it does have several fine moments and is topped off by a spectacularly debauched closing vision of hell.
 
Both films are flawed, but both demand to be watched. And they, along with Saló, have made me want to seek out more Pasolini works. None of those I have seen are masterpieces, but there is enough in all of them to convince me that Pasolini has one within his body of work. Il vangelo secondo Matteo is often cited as his greatest film and that's what I'll be seeking out next... And, on this evidence, I'm expecting great great things.

_____________________________

"People think I have an interesting walk. Hell, I'm just trying to hold my gut in."

If I get there early will it be the right time
our heaven is just waiting so put your hand into mine.

(in reply to Deviation)
Post #: 7368
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 3/11/2009 2:05:24 AM   
Deviation


Posts: 27284
Joined: 2/6/2006
From: Enemies of Film HQ
I personally loved The Orphanage, it might not have been the most original, in fact at times it felt as if Del Toro directed this and it reminded me a lot of The Devil's Backbone, but the final 15 minutes were stunning and sets it apart from those films.

YAY for Starhip Troopers! I do prefer it as a satire to Robocop though, I love how the state seems to be a socail liberatarion one heavily corrupted by fascism. And the way the soldiers are nothing but numbers and how they are expendable and.......*goes on forever*

I might disagree about Mulholland Drive, I think it might be his finest, re-using the ideas of Lost Highway with far more maturity and grace (not that Lost Highway is bad, I love it).

I really liked The Devil and Daniel Webster, mostly for Huston's performance. And the creepiness (sorry, cannot think of a better word right now) it creates whenever the Devil appears is fantastic. And the dance at the end is still effective today, even if the techniques used have been overdone in other films.

I'm just going to post that right now cause I need to sleep (university and TGTBTW tomorrow). I'll discuss the juciest part of the post tomorrow.



_____________________________

quote:

ORIGINAL: Dpp1978
There are certainly times where calling a person a cunt is not only reasonable, it is a gross understatement.

quote:


ORIGINAL: elab49
I really wish I could go down to see Privates

(in reply to Harry Lime)
Post #: 7369
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 3/11/2009 7:22:20 AM   
Gimli The Dwarf


Posts: 77704
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Central Park Zoo
49. The Visitor (1st view, 2008, Thomas McCarthy) - 4/5*
Wonderful drama with a fantastic central performance from Richard Jenkins. I'm not sure if it's depressingly uplifting or heartwarmingly bleak, but I never knew that watching someone learn to play the bongos could be so charming. Note to PA. This is higher than The Da Vinci Code

68. Let The Right One In/Låt den rätte komma in (1st view, 2008, Tomas Alfredson) - 4/5*
Atmospheric and chilling vampire film, one of the best in a long time, apart from maybe Van Helsing. A shame that the story mainly focuses on the children, as some of the adult characters are equally, if not more fascinating.

171. The Young Victoria (1st view, 2009, Jean-Marc Vallée) - 4/5*
Seemed a bit skimpy on details but it certainly looked good. Any film with Jim Broadbent and Paull Bettany is good enought for me.

200. High Anxiety (1st view, 1977, Mel Brooks) - 3/5*
I don't like Mel Brooks' films all that much, but this was was at least interesting trying to spot all the references to Hitchcock films.


November list here!

Features


1. Up (1st view, 2009, Pete Docter/Bob Peterson) - 5/5*
2. Liberty (10th+ view, 1929, Leo McCarey) - 5/5
3. Australia (2nd view, 2008, Baz Luhrmann) - 5/5
4. The Pumpkin Eater (1st view, 1964, Jack Clayton) - 4/5*
5. Going Bye Bye (10+ view, 1934, Charley Rogers) - 4/5
6. Blotto (10th+ view, 1930, James Parrott) - 4/5
7. The Visitor (1st view, 2008, Thomas McCarthy) - 4/5*
8. The Fall (1st view, 2006, Tarsem Singh) - 4/5*
9. The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman (1st view, John Korty, 1974) - 4/5*
10. The Ghosts of Berkeley Square (1st view, 1947, Vernon Sewell) - 4/5*

11. Revolutionary Road (1st view, 2008, Sam Mendes) - 4/5*
12. The Midnight Patrol (5th+ view, 1933, Lloyd French) - 4/5
13. Red Road (1st view, 2006, Andrea Arnold) - 4/5*
14. The Saddest Music in the World (1st view, 2003, Guy Maddin) - 4/5*
15. Tideland (1st view, 2005, Terry Gilliam) - 4/5*
16. Taking Sides (1st view, 2001, István Szabó) - 4/5*
17. 2012 (1st view, 2009, Roland Emmerich) - 4/5*
18. Der Baader Meinhof Komplex (1st view, 2008, Uli Edel) - 4/5*
19. Alpha Male (1st view, 2006, Dan Wilde) - 4/5*
20. Out Of The Blue (1st view, 2006, Robert Sarkies) - 4/5*

21. WΔZ (2st view, 2007, Tom Shankland) - 4/5*
22. A Dirty Shame (1st view, 2004, John Waters) - 4/5*
23. Paperback Hero (1st view, 1999, Antony J. Bowman) - 3/5*
24. The Eve Of St. Mark (1st view, 1944, John M. Stahl) - 3/5*
25. Be Big (5th view, 1931, James Parrott) - 3/5
26. Varian's War (1st view, 2001, Lionel Chetwynd) - 3/5*
27. The Boys From County Clare (1st view, 2003, John Irvin) - 3/5*
28. The Rat Pack (1st view, 1998, Rob Cohen) - 3/5*
29. The Crimson Kimino (1st view, 1959, Samuel Fuller) - 3/5*
30. A Good Man In Africa (1st view, 1994, Bruce Beresford) - 3/5*

31. High Anxiety (1st view, 1977, Mel Brooks) - 3/5*
32. Paperclips (1st view, 2004, Elliot Berlin/Joe Fab) - 3/5*
33. Thir13en Ghosts (2nd view, 2001, Steve Beck) - 2/5
34. Metropolis (1st view, 2001, Rintaro) - 2/5*
35. Say Anything (1st view, 1989, Cameron Crowe) - 2/5*
36. Guinevere (1st view, 1999, Audrey Wells) - 2/5*

Shorts

1. Partly Cloudy (1st view, 2009, Peter Sohn) - 5/5*

< Message edited by Gimli The Dwarf -- 6/12/2009 7:52:27 AM >


_____________________________

So, sir, we let him have it right up! And I have to report, sir, he did not like it, sir.

Fellow scientists, poindexters, geeks.

Yeah, Mr. White! Yeah, science!

Much more better!

(in reply to Harry Lime)
Post #: 7370
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 3/11/2009 7:33:11 AM   
Pigeon Army


Posts: 14612
Joined: 29/1/2006
From: Pixar HQ, George Lucas' Office.
quote:

ORIGINAL: Gimli The Dwarf

49. The Visitor (1st view, 2008, Thomas McCarthy) - 4/5*
Wonderful drama with a fantastic central performance from Richard Jenkins. I'm not sure if it's depressingly uplifting or heartwarmingly bleak, but I never knew that watching someone learn to play the bongos could be so charming. Note to PA. This is higher than The Da Vinci Code


Well, with this, Pixar and LotR, at least your taste isn't completely shot to hell.

_____________________________

quote:

ORIGINAL: Rinc
She's supposed to be 13! I'd want her to be very attractive though


quote:

ORIGINAL: MonsterCat
quote:

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army
Stop being mean to Deviation

No.

(in reply to Gimli The Dwarf)
Post #: 7371
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 3/11/2009 10:20:53 AM   
Gram123

 

Posts: 5537
Joined: 19/1/2006
From: Reino Unido
quote:

ORIGINAL: Gimli The Dwarf
68. Let The Right One In/Låt den rätte komma in (1st view, 2008, Tomas Alfredson) - 4/5*
Atmospheric and chilling vampire film, one of the best in a long time, apart from maybe Van Helsing.





_____________________________

Gram123's Top Songs Project

(in reply to Gimli The Dwarf)
Post #: 7372
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 3/11/2009 10:22:48 AM   
elab49


Posts: 54583
Joined: 1/10/2005
Bless Gimli for undercutting the praise so dramatically!

9 (Acker, 2009) (For Dev)

9 is a feature developed from the short of the same name by Shane Acker. The problem the film has is that the short was already overlong for what it was. Visually it is very impressive – storywise, there is nothing there. Monster House continues to surprise me – I really like that film but none of the writers seem to have been capable of that fluke of a script – this is no exception. The most cliched action dialogue has been cut/pasted into the poor excuse for the script that also tries its hand at some very heavy handed allegory – the various parts of the soul are split between baseless religion and knowledge, and they only succeed when the church falls and the deluded come to realise their error, crafted onto a blunt revisiting of Nazi ideology. That kind of thing. Only more obvious  with the hideouts being the actual church and the library. While the backgrounds are often very impressive, the story itself is plain silly and deluded (of all things to be inspired by, the Tranformers all spark thing seems a kind of dumb way to go). Many of the designs are derivative and somewhat cliched steam punk stuff as well. And rather cloyingly we seem to be left with a nice little nuclear family – the dolls looking rather like mum, dad and the twins.

_____________________________

Lips Together and Blow - blogtasticness and Glasgow Film Festival GFF13!

quote:

ORIGINAL: Deviation] LIKE AMERICA'S SWEETHEARTS TOO. IT MADE ME LAUGH A LOT AND THOUGHT IT WAS WITTY. ALSO I FEEL SLOWLY DYING INSIDE. I KEEP AGREEING WITH ELAB.


Annual Poll 2013 - All Lists Welcome

(in reply to Gram123)
Post #: 7373
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 3/11/2009 10:27:04 AM   
rawlinson

 

Posts: 45002
Joined: 13/6/2008
From: Timbuktu. Chinese or Fictional.
quote:

ORIGINAL: elab49

Bless Gimli for undercutting the praise so dramatically!



It'd be funny if he wasn't serious. Gimli, I hope this Christmas you're visited by the ghost of The Cush' who shows you the error of your ways.

(in reply to elab49)
Post #: 7374
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 3/11/2009 11:46:07 AM   
Gimli The Dwarf


Posts: 77704
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Central Park Zoo
I put that in for a joke! Of course, if I watch Van Helsing before the year's out, we'll see what spot it ends up in

_____________________________

So, sir, we let him have it right up! And I have to report, sir, he did not like it, sir.

Fellow scientists, poindexters, geeks.

Yeah, Mr. White! Yeah, science!

Much more better!

(in reply to rawlinson)
Post #: 7375
RE: Top 100 Films I've Wathced This Year: 2009 - 3/11/2009 10:02:54 PM   
Rinc


Posts: 12829
Joined: 2/10/2005
From: A park bench, with a newspaper quilt
My October list. As you can see i've been going through classic Disney films. Also looking at this now i'm not happy with some of the placings so i'll have to rejig, specificall Henry V, it should be higher.

50. Bambi (Hand, 1942) - 8
52. Fantasia (Algar/Armstrong, 1940) - 7
56. Alice In Wonderland (Geronimi/Jackson/Luske, 1951) - 7
63. *The Thief of Baghdad (Walsh, 1924) - 7
88. *Malcolm X (Lee, 1992) - 7
111. Cinderella (Geronimi/Jackson/Luske, 1950) - 7
119. Dumbo (Sharpsteen, 1941) - 7
145. Peter Pan (Geronimi/Jackson/Luske, 1953) - 7
151. *Ghost World (Zwigoff, 2001) - 7
158. Pinocchio (Luske/Sharpsteen, 1940) - 6
162. *The Squid and the Whale (Baumbach, 2005) - 6
163. *Ghost Dog: Way of the Samurai (Jarmusch, 1999) - 6
164. *A Room For Romeo Brass (Meadows, 1999) - 6
167. *Panic Room (Fincher, 2002) - 6
181. *Kidulthood (Huda, 2006) - 6
184. *Henry V (Olivier, 1944) - 6
193. *Wagon Master (Ford, 1950) - 6
200. *Up (Docter/Peterson, 2009) - 6
232. Son Of Rambow (Jennings, 2007) - 6
233. *Somers Town (Meadows, 2008) - 6
244. *Zombieland (Fleischer, 2009) - 6
273. *The Station Agent (McCarthy, 2003) - 5
274. Ghost Town (Koepp, 2008) - 5
292. *The Imaginarium of Dr Parnassus (Gilliam, 2009) - 5
312. *You. Me and Dupree (Russo, 2006) - 4

< Message edited by Rinc -- 3/11/2009 10:05:52 PM >


_____________________________

No spoilers please:

Invisiotext:
[ color=#F1F1F1 ]text[ /color ]

(in reply to Rinc)
Post #: 7376
RE: Top 100 Films I've Wathced This Year: 2009 - 3/11/2009 10:39:26 PM   
paul_ie86


Posts: 11422
Joined: 4/1/2007
From: Chelsea Hotel #2
Up only scraping into the top 200

_____________________________

My Group Project's facebook page. Please like

(in reply to Rinc)
Post #: 7377
RE: Top 100 Films I've Wathced This Year: 2009 - 3/11/2009 11:05:08 PM   
Rinc


Posts: 12829
Joined: 2/10/2005
From: A park bench, with a newspaper quilt
I wasn't overly impressed with it. It was good overall, the first 10 minutes were brilliant and everything for a while was very good. Then it descended into formulaic chase sequences which have been done plenty of times before and in my opinion much much better.

_____________________________

No spoilers please:

Invisiotext:
[ color=#F1F1F1 ]text[ /color ]

(in reply to paul_ie86)
Post #: 7378
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 3/11/2009 11:55:25 PM   
Deviation


Posts: 27284
Joined: 2/6/2006
From: Enemies of Film HQ
quote:

ORIGINAL: Harry Lime
 
As for Ai no corrida, it still has the power to shock even today. It is explicit, twisted and more than once strays beyond the, ahem, realm of intellectual provocation and into gratuitous pornography. There were moments that I sat there and thought "I am hating this" but then the film ends and, much like Saló o le 120 giornate di Sodoma, you've realised that you've watched something operating on a deeply fascinating level. Saló is far more challenging though. And far more horrifying!
 
Which brings me to the Pasolini films. Hmmm. It's hard to love Pasolini. I admire him immensely, but I find it hard to love him. His visual sense is beautiful. His humour somehow suceeds in being both broad and subtle at the same time. His satircal barbs cut to the bone. Yet there is a sense that he revels just a little bit too much in the "enfant terrible" tag that he acquired through his writing and his films. This is apparent in both Il Decameron and I racconti di Canterbury. As much as I appreciate the bawdy nature of the source material, for long periods both films tend to descend into little more than a series of vignettes that involve increasingly elaborate ploys to cuckold fat husbands or shrewish wives. Of course, there is always an admirable sense of satirical mischief-making underlying these sequences but whilst some work, others do not.
 
Il Decameron is the far more balanced work, with its knockabout opening sequence (involving a sabotaged privvy and tomb-robbing) as well as the story of gardener and the nunnery both hitting the mark. However, the highlight has to be the strangely sweet tale of the young lovers who steal a night under the stars. It's a beautiful moment. I racconti di Canterbury doesn't hang quite so well but it does have several fine moments and is topped off by a spectacularly debauched closing vision of hell.
 
Both films are flawed, but both demand to be watched. And they, along with Saló, have made me want to seek out more Pasolini works. None of those I have seen are masterpieces, but there is enough in all of them to convince me that Pasolini has one within his body of work. Il vangelo secondo Matteo is often cited as his greatest film and that's what I'll be seeking out next... And, on this evidence, I'm expecting great great things.

 
Can't say I liked Ai no Corrida on first watch. Found it simply unpleasent. Opinion on it has grown on it though, and there is something strangely femministic about it. Same with Salo actually (except replace femminism with anti-fascism), only for some unknown reason I watched Salo twice. Still propably think Ai No Corrida is a finer film that Salo though, Salo can drown all its themes and ideas under its violence and degradation, Ai no Corrida feels more balanced.
 
I liked Il Decameron, I didn't like the first half much when all it seemed to be was a bunch of vignettes (some good ones mind you) but the second half with the coming of Giotto worked better. I asked on The Cantembury tales since I haven't seen it yet. And I personally thought Arabian Nights was the strongest of the Trilogy of Life. His 60s films are far better though, and Il Vangelo Secondo Matteo (possibly the best film on this subject matter you'll ever see) and short film La Ricotta (can be his best) are very close to perfection. His Mamma Roma is a bit weaker to this too, its still a great film. Theorem is very ambigous in its intent but it's also a very interesting film in itself. Basically I prefer his 60s stuff before he lost some restraint in the 70s.
 
quote:



9 (Acker, 2009) (For Dev)

9 is a feature developed from the short of the same name by Shane Acker. The problem the film has is that the short was already overlong for what it was. Visually it is very impressive – storywise, there is nothing there. Monster House continues to surprise me – I really like that film but none of the writers seem to have been capable of that fluke of a script – this is no exception. The most cliched action dialogue has been cut/pasted into the poor excuse for the script that also tries its hand at some very heavy handed allegory – the various parts of the soul are split between baseless religion and knowledge, and they only succeed when the church falls and the deluded come to realise their error, crafted onto a blunt revisiting of Nazi ideology. That kind of thing. Only more obvious  with the hideouts being the actual church and the library. While the backgrounds are often very impressive, the story itself is plain silly and deluded (of all things to be inspired by, the Tranformers all spark thing seems a kind of dumb way to go). Many of the designs are derivative and somewhat cliched steam punk stuff as well. And rather cloyingly we seem to be left with a nice little nuclear family – the dolls looking rather like mum, dad and the twins.




Ouch, that's a shame, there really seemed to be a great concept in there.


_____________________________

quote:

ORIGINAL: Dpp1978
There are certainly times where calling a person a cunt is not only reasonable, it is a gross understatement.

quote:


ORIGINAL: elab49
I really wish I could go down to see Privates

(in reply to Harry Lime)
Post #: 7379
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2009 - 4/11/2009 1:40:53 AM   
DCMaximo


Posts: 992
Joined: 5/1/2007
From: Nottingham via Aidy Boothroyd's Palace of Wisdom
New entries:

23. Dr. Phibes Rises Again (1972, Fuest) 9/10
With the possible exception of Evil Dead 2, the second Dr Phibes movies is the most gleefully inventive and demented horror sequel I can think of. Surfacing from his underground tomb after 3 years, a reborn Phibes is travelling to Egypt to get a potion to grant his wife eternal life. Vincent Price has a whale of a time as Phibes, while the film features enough elaborate deaths (thrill as John Thaw is pecked to death by an eagle) and ludicrous plot points (the continued existence of Phibes' mechanical band the Clockwork Wizards) to retain attention throughout. Any film which features Price singing Somewhere Over The Rainbow is onto a winner.

70. The French Connection (1971, Friedkin) 8/10
The kind of film that improves with each viewing, Gene Hackman is perfectly cast as maverick detective Popeye Doyle, believably tough and intelligent as a barely-fictionalized version of a real-life New York policeman. The film features some outstanding scenes, with Hackman's car chase against a runaway train being the highlight.

127. Welcome To The Jungle (2003, Berg) 7/10
Highly enjoyable action vehicle for Dwayne Johnson, still very much known as the Rock at this point in his career. Already Johnson shows the kind of charisma and presence that has led to him becoming a perfectly fine lead actor and a supporting cast of Sean William-Scott, Rosario Dawson and an enjoyably-hammy Christopher Walken all bring in good work. A bit Midnight Run-light in places, it's still solid entertainment.

_____________________________

The Spanish Inquisition of the 'Get Carlton Banks a TV Spin-off' Association

"Carlotta was the kind of town where they spell trouble T-R-U-B-I-L, and if you try to correct them, they kill you"

(in reply to Deviation)
Post #: 7380
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