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RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 6/9/2010 1:51:49 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54577
Joined: 1/10/2005
Who let him back in?

_____________________________

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 swordsandsandals)
Post #: 9391
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 6/9/2010 1:55:53 PM   
Deviation


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

Devi, I'd go so far as to say even the finale is plodding. It was creepy at points, but I mostly felt like I'd spent fifteen minutes hearing whatsherface screaming and watching the cannibals ham it up like it was fucking gurning competition.


I really found it creepy, and the run was an incredible moment. And surely the final shot deserves it to rise to a 2/5 no?

quote:

But I don't care about being in a minority. I'm in the minority over Avatar, Precious, Meryl Streep, Forrest Gump, Braveheart, Titanic


So right...

quote:

and Aliens, and I'm right about all those too.


Yest so wrong.


_____________________________

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 #: 9392
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 6/9/2010 1:58:39 PM   
rawlinson

 

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

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army

In my opinion, all both of you are doing is condoning, nay, encouraging shit filmmaking. "It doesn't matter if the characters are well-written or not, just kill them and be creepy." Hell, if you don't care about the characters, then why should I care about them being killed? All it shows is that you people are silly and possibly need to be checked out.


It's not condoning shit film-making, it's understanding that different genres and sub-genres have different requirements. He's actually spot on with his musicals ref', what you're doing is refusing to accept the laws that have applied all through that sub-genre. If you watch a musical and think that it's shit because they keep breaking into song then you're not understanding the genre. But within that genre there's rules and levels of criticism, the songs need to fit the film, they need to be well-performed, you need to have people who can actually sing and dance. My problem with Moulin Rouge! (and certain other musicals like Chicago, Dreamgirls, etc) is that either I don't like the songs, don't like the performers, or don't think the songs serve the film well. When it comes to the slasher sub-genre, it's basically a step removed from the Italian gialli which themselves owe a large debt to the likes of Ten Little Indians. The characters aren't the most important aspect. The characters are even quite weak in the Christie, what makes them work is the tension or mystery they bring to the murders and the resolution. Slasher films take away the mystery element of the giallo because we know who the killer is, be it supernatural or simply someone unimportant in a mask. The reveal is never important, nor is the character development on the way to the reveal. What makes it work is that build up of atmosphere. If you don't agree with that, then you're not going to like the slasher sub-genre. If you do agree with it then you can recognise the difference in standards between a Black Christmas and a TCM at the top, to a Friday the 13th/Sleepaway Camp in the middle, all the way down to one of the endless sequels at the bottom.

(in reply to Pigeon Army)
Post #: 9393
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 6/9/2010 2:02:26 PM   
Miles Messervy 007


Posts: 6884
Joined: 11/2/2009
Oh, and the usual:



FILMS WATCHED IN AUGUST 2010


Features:


1. Gladiator (2000, R. Scott) RW 10 imdb review


2. Vamos a matar, compañeros [Companeros] (1970, Corbucci) 9 imdb review


3. The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie (2004, Hillenburg) 9 imdb review


4. Possession (1981, Zulawski) 9 imdb review


5. Jules et Jim [Jules and Jim] (1962, Truffaut) 9 imdb review


6. Footlight Parade (1933, Bacon) 8 imdb review


7. Zabriskie Point (1970, Antonioni) 8 imdb review


8. Once (2006, Carney) 8 imdb review


9. Roger & Me (1989, Moore) 8 imdb review


10. Collateral (2004, Mann) 8 imdb review


11. Inception (2010, Nolan) C 8 imdb review


12. Les carabiniers [The Riflemen] (1963, Godard) 8 imdb review


13. Kingdom of Heaven (2005, R. Scott) 8 imdb review


14. A Bug’s Life (1998, Lasseter) 7 imdb review


15. Crank: High Voltage (2009, Neveldine/Taylor) 7 imdb review


16. The Wrestler (2008, Aronofsky) 7 imdb review


17. Vicky Christina Barcelona (2008, Allen) RW 6 imdb review


18. The Last King of Scotland (2006, Macdonald) 5 imdb review

Shorts:

1. One Week (1920, Keaton/Cline) {22 mins} RW 9 imdb review
2. Geri’s Game (1997, Pinkava) {4 mins} RW 8 imdb review
3. The Scarecrow (1920, Keaton/Cline) {20 mins} 8 imdb review
4. Convict 13 (1920, Keaton/Cline) {20 mins} RW 8 imdb review
5. Neighbors (1920, Keaton/Cline) {18 mins} RW 7 imdb review



See code, ratings, and a brief explanation on shorts in the initial post.

Stats:
Films seen by decade (+shorts)
20s: 0 (+4)
30s: 1 (+0)
40s: 0 (+0)
50s: 0 (+0)
60s: 2 (+0)
70s: 2 (+0)
80s: 2 (+0)
90s: 1 (+1)
00s: 9 (+0)
10s: 1 (+0)

Average rating for features: 7.9
Average rating for shorts: 8.0
Average rating for cinema viewing: 8.0
Average rating for re-watches: 8.0

Directors with more than one feature:
Ridley Scott - 2

Directors with one feature:
Sergio Corbucci, Stephen Hillenburg, Andrzej Żuławski, François Truffaut, Lloyd Bacon, Michelangelo Antonioni, John Carney, Michael Moore, Michael Mann, Christopher Nolan, Jean-Luc Godard, John Lasseter, Mark Neveldine, Brian Taylor, Darren Aronofsky, Woody Allen, Kevin Macdonald

< Message edited by Miles Messervy 007 -- 6/9/2010 2:04:55 PM >


_____________________________

quote:

jamesbondguy:
Miles is clearly the finest film theorist of his generation

quote:

Deviation:
if it isn't ham, I'll eat a living pig.

(in reply to rawlinson)
Post #: 9394
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 6/9/2010 2:03:56 PM   
paul_ie86


Posts: 11421
Joined: 4/1/2007
From: Chelsea Hotel #2
quote:

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army

85.    Alien 3 (Assembly Cut) (1992, Fincher, USA) – 4/5
132.    Alien (1979, Scott, UK/USA) – 4/5**


Really? I'm a fan of Alien3 but it's not better than Alien. Or are placings not really that important that far down?

< Message edited by paul_ie86 -- 6/9/2010 2:04:56 PM >


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(in reply to Pigeon Army)
Post #: 9395
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 6/9/2010 2:09:47 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54577
Joined: 1/10/2005
Important or not, that's quite shocking.

I'm so glad I'm back on the PA's wrong side.

_____________________________

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 paul_ie86)
Post #: 9396
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 6/9/2010 2:14:00 PM   
Pigeon Army


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

ORIGINAL: rawlinson

quote:

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army

In my opinion, all both of you are doing is condoning, nay, encouraging shit filmmaking. "It doesn't matter if the characters are well-written or not, just kill them and be creepy." Hell, if you don't care about the characters, then why should I care about them being killed? All it shows is that you people are silly and possibly need to be checked out.


It's not condoning shit film-making, it's understanding that different genres and sub-genres have different requirements. He's actually spot on with his musicals ref', what you're doing is refusing to accept the laws that have applied all through that sub-genre. If you watch a musical and think that it's shit because they keep breaking into song then you're not understanding the genre. But within that genre there's rules and levels of criticism, the songs need to fit the film, they need to be well-performed, you need to have people who can actually sing and dance. My problem with Moulin Rouge! (and certain other musicals like Chicago, Dreamgirls, etc) is that either I don't like the songs, don't like the performers, or don't think the songs serve the film well. When it comes to the slasher sub-genre, it's basically a step removed from the Italian gialli which themselves owe a large debt to the likes of Ten Little Indians. The characters aren't the most important aspect. The characters are even quite weak in the Christie, what makes them work is the tension or mystery they bring to the murders and the resolution. Slasher films take away the mystery element of the giallo because we know who the killer is, be it supernatural or simply someone unimportant in a mask. The reveal is never important, nor is the character development on the way to the reveal. What makes it work is that build up of atmosphere. If you don't agree with that, then you're not going to like the slasher sub-genre. If you do agree with it then you can recognise the difference in standards between a Black Christmas and a TCM at the top, to a Friday the 13th/Sleepaway Camp in the middle, all the way down to one of the endless sequels at the bottom.



This has nothing to do with Moulin Rouge!, so stop trying to bring it onto that.

The thing is, though, that good characterisation shouldn't be 'optional' in a film that requires us to be terrified for these people. It seems counter-productive to give us a line-up of possible victims and then expect us to be scared simply by the fact that we're waiting for them to die. Besides, it's not like slasher films aren't capable of having well-developed characters - Halloween gives us Laurie Strode, who is quite well-developed over the first film; All the Boys Love Mandy Lane actually had characters I was interested in, not people I thought were either personality voids or incorrigible douchebags whose lives I couldn't care less about. To say that "good characters aren't the point hurf durf" is nothing like saying "I don't like people singing in musicals", because good characterisation isn't something deeply encoded into slasher DNA - and if it is, then it damn well shouldn't be, because it's lazy and becomes scares for the purpose of scares, and that's just lazy and pointless.

Also, to suggest I can't figure out the difference in craftsmanship between TCM and Friday the 13th because I can't accept this is ludicrous - I can see that TCM is far more successful at points in trying to develop an atmosphere, though I don't find the film particularly atmospheric anyways. That I can't abide a film that puts no effort into its characters only exacerbates that, because I can't really be scared if I don't care that death is imminent. To be honest, I shouldn't have to, and if that means I won't like slasher films, so be it. I'll stick to Ravenous and The Thing and The Exorcist and horrors with great, well-developed characters.

EDIT: Also, Alien 3 is excellent and much better than the original. Trufax.


_____________________________

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 rawlinson)
Post #: 9397
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 6/9/2010 2:19:36 PM   
Miles Messervy 007


Posts: 6884
Joined: 11/2/2009

quote:

ORIGINAL: Ultimo Lee

quote:

ORIGINAL: Miles Messervy 007

Pick a Rohmer character.

Emmanuelle Chaulet's character in My Girlfriend's Boyfriend

Sorry, forgot to reply to that. Hoped you would list a character from a film I haven't seen so that I would have to watch it, but let's settle for this, which I watched in April. Don't see what the problem here is, TBH. Yes, she's whiny, but the whole point of Rohmer's films is the characters' search for happiness. Until she finds it, you do want to slap her, but she redeems herself by the end. Also, it's one of his lightest films so not a brilliant example.

_____________________________

quote:

jamesbondguy:
Miles is clearly the finest film theorist of his generation

quote:

Deviation:
if it isn't ham, I'll eat a living pig.

(in reply to Ultimo Lee)
Post #: 9398
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 6/9/2010 2:32:10 PM   
swordsandsandals


Posts: 12571
Joined: 6/1/2006
From: A magical forest

quote:

ORIGINAL: elab49

Who let him back in?


The back door was open.

_____________________________

quote:

ORIGINAL: Rawlinson

Swords is right about everything.



quote:

ORIGINAL: Hood_Man

Swords smells like bum.



(in reply to elab49)
Post #: 9399
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 6/9/2010 2:32:46 PM   
rawlinson

 

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

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army

The thing is, though, that good characterisation shouldn't be 'optional' in a film that requires us to be terrified for these people.



Ok, but let's take this back to musicals again. How well developed are the characters in Singin' in the Rain? I love that film, I think it's probably the best musical ever made, but the characters aren't exactly given a great deal of depth, are they? We're given thumbnail sketches and we care about them, but a lot of our affection is more down to the acting than us being given anything deep or complex in the characters.

With slashers, the characters do largely exist to be killed. You can't argue against that, you can say you think it should be otherwise, but look at the situation of your basic slasher. You have to have a large enough cast so that there can be a significant number of deaths, you have to establish these characters, establish the situation, establish some kind of motivation for the killer and then let them loose. All of this is being done in a running time of usually 90 minutes or less. There's no real time (or often inclination) to develop the characters, and there's not really any need to for a slasher to work. A film like Halloween had a smaller core cast and it could afford to take more time establishing Laurie as an interesting character. Alien is basically a slasher, and it is one that takes time to establish characters, but again there's a great difference in running time and (more importantly) budget.  Most films don't take that approach. Now you can call that out as a flaw of the genre if you like, but it still remains the way the genre works. Add to that the fact that most of the 70s/early 80s slashers you'll see were very low budget productions made with actors who couldn't act. But like I say, atmosphere is key. If you don't find them atmospheric then they're not going to work, but that's a personal thing and it can never be argued as objective. I'd disagree about Mandy Lane, btw. It's just a slicker version of the 80s slashers, some nice direction, but I hated every one of the characters and it never does anything all that special.

quote:

That I can't abide a film that puts no effort into its characters only exacerbates that, because I can't really be scared if I don't care that death is imminent.


But that's a personal thing. What scares you is an incredibly individual thing and something that usually taps into our own deeper fears. I mean you just gave Ravenous as an example, it's a superb film, and the fact that it's a two-hander for much of the running time allows it greater time to develop the characters, but I never once found it frightening. If you need to connect with a character to feel scared then most slashers aren't going to be for you, but not everyone requires that.

(in reply to Pigeon Army)
Post #: 9400
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 6/9/2010 4:26:04 PM   
swordsandsandals


Posts: 12571
Joined: 6/1/2006
From: A magical forest
So on the flight back I watched bad films that I was interested in but didn't want to pay for. Unsurprisingly, they were mostly bad.

The Last Airbender

Avatar: The Last Airbender is one of the best children's shows out there. It's daft yet witty, childish yet exciting and a whole barrel of fun. It's also really quite thrilling. So the film adaptation, naturally, is... a pile of monkey turds. The themes of the show are jumbled into generic ideas that come straight from Screenwriting for Dummies, yet the actual dialogue suggests it was written by someone who has never read a book in their life. It clunks from exposition to forced emotion, and not once does it feel natural. The actors struggle manfully through the terrible writing, and whilst they all have a certain amount of charm (Nichola Peltz will be a very attractive young lady in a few years time as well /pedobear) they are hampered by a script so dire, they barely register. For those not familiar with the television series, the film will make even less sense.

Yet for all the clear incompetence on show, it's actually diverting for the running time - the martial arts and 'bending' scenes are well realised, and the final battle is fairly epic. So it's not a total failure, and I watched worse films on the flight. Perhaps not as bad as people have been saying. 2/5

Iron Man 2

Dull, dull, dull. There was so little imagination on show here it was just a rerun of Transformers with RDJ overdoing the smugness in between. Is it too much to ask for just a little invention in our action films? Christopher Nolan says no.

Oh, and someone please get Jon Favreau off the screens. 2/5

Prince of Persia

Actually quite fun. Jake Gyllenhaal is an immensely charming lead, and the plot is bonkers enough with silly enough action that it's only after the film has ended that you realise the entire thing was utter bobbins. 3/5

Hot Tub Time Machine

Dear sweet mother of Mary, never have I seen a comedy this... well, as you may know, I don't make a habit of swearing, but this... shit. I mean, the jokes are obvious and painfully unfunny, and the characters are largely obnoxious. But for the love of all that is holy, somebody hook Rob Cordrry in the face with a vicious claw and rip his visage to bits so he dies a horrible, painful death. The man had no discernable talent whatsoever, and every moment he was on screen I wanted to reach through the screen and punch him in the face. I mean, what the hell? Did someone think this guy was funny? Did a director at some point say 'hey, this guy is hilarious! Let's have him make crass sex jokes for two hours. That'll be funny, right?' I can't fully express the utter contempt I have for this film and that man. The writing is lazy, flat and just dull. Somebody please line up everyone involved in this and shoot them. 1/5

Date Night

James Franco and Mark Wahlberg save this from being a 1/5. The rest sucked. 2/5

_____________________________

quote:

ORIGINAL: Rawlinson

Swords is right about everything.



quote:

ORIGINAL: Hood_Man

Swords smells like bum.



(in reply to rawlinson)
Post #: 9401
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 6/9/2010 4:33:04 PM   
Rhubarb


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

quote:

ORIGINAL: swordsandsandals

shit.


omg.

_____________________________

Team Ginge
WWLD?


quote:

ORIGINAL: FritzlFan

You organisational skills sicken me, Rhubarb.



(in reply to swordsandsandals)
Post #: 9402
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 6/9/2010 4:40:59 PM   
swordsandsandals


Posts: 12571
Joined: 6/1/2006
From: A magical forest
Shh. I ran out of Vocabulary okay? I've been up for over 30 hours straight. I couldn't think of a better word to describe it.

_____________________________

quote:

ORIGINAL: Rawlinson

Swords is right about everything.



quote:

ORIGINAL: Hood_Man

Swords smells like bum.



(in reply to Rhubarb)
Post #: 9403
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 6/9/2010 6:59:17 PM   
paul_ie86


Posts: 11421
Joined: 4/1/2007
From: Chelsea Hotel #2
I'm shocked and appalled at you swords. I frankly thought you were above that. I'll never trust anyone again.

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Post #: 9404
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 6/9/2010 7:10:16 PM   
Professor Moriarty

 

Posts: 10125
Joined: 6/10/2005
From: the waters of Casablanca
I kind of agree with you on Iron Man 2. I actually thought there was a good story in there, that what was keeping Stark alive was killing him. But that seemed easy overcome. IMO it also suffered that the best bit came relatively early on in the film. If you'll forgive how Stark got himself behind the wheel the fight in Monaco was pretty good. Oh and get Jon Favreau off the screen. Well get Larry Ellison CEO of Oracle off their too. ACDC is rock and roll and cool, Heads of multinational companies unless you are Richard Branson, not cool.

Prince of Persia I agree again Swords. I didn't expect to like it. But I found it good light-hearted fun.

I add Four Lions to this. And I'll be honest, I've not really worked out yet how to judge it. On the one hand it made me laugh (in places, but sometimes a lot), its also brave in its subject. But on the other hand I think there's just a big cop out in not really looking at the motives of terrorists and just saying "ah but sure these are pretty stupid guys". I suspect that if Armando Ianucci had been involved you'd have had a real cracker here.

(in reply to swordsandsandals)
Post #: 9405
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 6/9/2010 7:17:55 PM   
swordsandsandals


Posts: 12571
Joined: 6/1/2006
From: A magical forest
Other things I watched whilst away:

On the flight there:
Bad Lieutenant
The worst Herzog I've seen yet. Apart from the fact that that Cage was a drug addict and slightly mental, there didn't seem to be anything holding it together thematically or plot-wise. It was just a rambling study of the man. And as the man was a moral vacuum with no redeeming features, I found it very hard to like this film. Herzog's direction is solid, however, and Cage is engaging. 3/5

Up in the Air


Saw this again and it really is one of the better Oscar films of last year. So much better than the two frontrunners. I love Anna Kendrick. 4.5/5

Shrek Forever After


Better than Shrek the Third, still fairly uninventive. 3/5

And then when I was there I saw some films with my cousin. Inception was still one of the most thrilling films ever the second time round, but Knight and Day really wasn't. The Blind Side is better than Precious but not as good as Invictus. Hot Fuzz is still funny. I think that's it. Oh wait, no. The Devil Wears Prada. Er, yeah.

_____________________________

quote:

ORIGINAL: Rawlinson

Swords is right about everything.



quote:

ORIGINAL: Hood_Man

Swords smells like bum.



(in reply to paul_ie86)
Post #: 9406
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 6/9/2010 7:42:02 PM   
Professor Moriarty

 

Posts: 10125
Joined: 6/10/2005
From: the waters of Casablanca
xXx

This is the first film I've ever watched on BluRay (hey I'm behind the times, so what?). Ummm I couldn't really spot any difference between this and films I normally watch. Are newer Blurays any better?

(in reply to swordsandsandals)
Post #: 9407
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 7/9/2010 12:42:03 AM   
swordsandsandals


Posts: 12571
Joined: 6/1/2006
From: A magical forest
Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

After the let down of 2009, 2010 is turning out to be vintage.

_____________________________

quote:

ORIGINAL: Rawlinson

Swords is right about everything.



quote:

ORIGINAL: Hood_Man

Swords smells like bum.



(in reply to Professor Moriarty)
Post #: 9408
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 7/9/2010 3:28:51 AM   
Pigeon Army


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

ORIGINAL: rawlinson

quote:

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army

The thing is, though, that good characterisation shouldn't be 'optional' in a film that requires us to be terrified for these people.



Ok, but let's take this back to musicals again. How well developed are the characters in Singin' in the Rain? I love that film, I think it's probably the best musical ever made, but the characters aren't exactly given a great deal of depth, are they? We're given thumbnail sketches and we care about them, but a lot of our affection is more down to the acting than us being given anything deep or complex in the characters.


Touche, I guess, but TCM can't even muster good performances. They're all wooden as fuck or, if you're Franklin, obnoxious to the point that I was laughing when he bit the dust. On top of that, there is actually something to invest in in Singin' in the Rain - Gene's and Debbie's romance probably constitutes character development a lot better than anything in TCM or F13, and Cosmo and Lina are fantastic comedy characters - they're broad, perhaps, but there's still a lot more to them than "Generic Teenager #1".

quote:

With slashers, the characters do largely exist to be killed. You can't argue against that, you can say you think it should be otherwise, but look at the situation of your basic slasher. You have to have a large enough cast so that there can be a significant number of deaths, you have to establish these characters, establish the situation, establish some kind of motivation for the killer and then let them loose. All of this is being done in a running time of usually 90 minutes or less. There's no real time (or often inclination) to develop the characters, and there's not really any need to for a slasher to work.


I am arguing against that, because I think it should be otherwise, and accepting it as something that happens when there are clear examples of where slashers have given us good characters that we can invest in seems self-defeating. I'm not asking for in-depth backstories and constant development for every single character - I'm asking for personalities, I'm asking for good performances, I'm asking for characters, not planks of wood. It's not a slasher, but The Thing is about fifteen minutes longer than TCM and has a similarly-sized cast, much more time dedicated to violence and atmosphere, and still manages to give us great, immediately recognisable characters we can invest in. Halloween  manages two characters -  Laurie and Dr. Loomis - and I don't hold its characterisation against it.

quote:

Most films don't take that approach. Now you can call that out as a flaw of the genre if you like, but it still remains the way the genre works. Add to that the fact that most of the 70s/early 80s slashers you'll see were very low budget productions made with actors who couldn't act. But like I say, atmosphere is key. If you don't find them atmospheric then they're not going to work, but that's a personal thing and it can never be argued as objective. I'd disagree about Mandy Lane, btw. It's just a slicker version of the 80s slashers, some nice direction, but I hated every one of the characters and it never does anything all that special.


I don't recall arguing this as something objective - of course whether characters and atmosphere work for you is subjective, and Mandy Lane's a good example, because I got some of the characters, particularly Bird (poor Bird) and Mandy, but you clearly didn't - but I still don't see why I should be satisfied with this just because "that's the way the genre works". It's like pointing at a Hummer that burns through fuel like a motherfucker and ignoring the way it burns through fuel because "that's just the way it works". Just because something is like that doesn't mean it should be like that, and that's the problem I have with the characters in TCM and F13 - they don't have to be like that. In fact, if you're arguing budget as an issue, then it would probably be cheaper to spend more time developing character in locations and less time pulling off horror set pieces, because the set pieces generally bring more people, are more complex in their set-ups (if you want to get an atmosphere) and cost more.

quote:


But that's a personal thing.


I don't think I've ever denied this.

quote:

What scares you is an incredibly individual thing and something that usually taps into our own deeper fears. I mean you just gave Ravenous as an example, it's a superb film, and the fact that it's a two-hander for much of the running time allows it greater time to develop the characters, but I never once found it frightening. If you need to connect with a character to feel scared then most slashers aren't going to be for you, but not everyone requires that.


Ravenous isn't overtly frightening, but it is creepy as all fuck a lot of the time (Carlyle just knocks that out of the park), and it doesn't sacrifice characterisation for atmosphere. You seem to be suggesting that there's some sort of inevitable trade-off here, yet there are numerous examples that display how wrong that assertion is.


_____________________________

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 rawlinson)
Post #: 9409
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 7/9/2010 4:23:57 AM   
rawlinson

 

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

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army

Touche, I guess, but TCM can't even muster good performances.


True, but how many of them had worked before? You're slating amateur actors for being amateurs. I agree that most of the performances are pretty bad, I just don't think it matters to what the film is. TCM was completed on a really small budget and Hooper's intention was more to capture a sense of isolation and the brutality he was sensing in the changes in society. Now you can argue that it should have had both atmosphere and stronger characters, I'm saying it's not needed depending on what you're doing with the film. Compare it to literature, you seem to be saying that everything should be a novel, with the depth of character, themes and intricate plotting associated with novels. I'm saying sometimes they can be short stories, sometimes they can be a poem. TCM is closer to a poem. You don't have to like its approach, but it is a valid one.

quote:

I am arguing against that, because I think it should be otherwise, and accepting it as something that happens when there are clear examples of where slashers have given us good characters that we can invest in seems self-defeating. I'm not asking for in-depth backstories and constant development for every single character - I'm asking for personalities, I'm asking for good performances, I'm asking for characters, not planks of wood. It's not a slasher, but The Thing is about fifteen minutes longer than TCM and has a similarly-sized cast, much more time dedicated to violence and atmosphere, and still manages to give us great, immediately recognisable characters we can invest in.


The Thing was also made on a far larger budget than TCM and had a source text to work from along with the money to pay talented actors who'd worked in films a lot longer. TCM was made in a month on a budget that was roughly 1/10 of The Thing's. It also has a very different purpose to TCM. For The Thing to work it needs to develop a sense of paranoia and mistrust among the characters, to do that it has to develop the characters. TCM doesn't need to do that to achieve what Hooper sets out do. Again, it all comes back to what you think film should do. If you that any kind of narrative film, even one with a narrative as flimsy as TCM, needs to be character driven then you're never going to think a film like it can work. If you don't think that then it becomes about degrees of success at doing what it's attempting to do.

quote:

I don't recall arguing this as something objective


Well, when you said this

quote:

Also, are you going to sit there and tell me TCM and Friday the 13th are good films?


It did make it sound as if you thought it was impossible for anyone to think that they are good in any objective sense. If you're saying you accept that other people can like them, love them, even think they're the best of their genre, then it's really a pointless discussion because it simply becomes about you disliking something and me liking it and it's just an pointless discussion because nobody is ever going to convince the other any different.

quote:

Ravenous isn't overtly frightening, but it is creepy as all fuck a lot of the time (Carlyle just knocks that out of the park), and it doesn't sacrifice characterisation for atmosphere.


But Ravenous is a film that needs the characters to make it work properly, simply because of the nature of the film. You could easily make it work with Pearce being hunted down by a psychotic Carlyle with the emphasis on the set-pieces over the acting, but it would require a different script and a different director.

quote:

You seem to be suggesting that there's some sort of inevitable trade-off here, yet there are numerous examples that display how wrong that assertion is.


I'm not suggesting that, what I'm saying is that there are various approaches and all are equally valid. Some films work based on the human element and develop the characters more, some films don't. You can have horror films that are completely character driven, a recent film like Pontypool is a very good example of a film that would crumble if the characters didn't work, some films, like Suspiria, don't require any great depth of character because it is about the atmosphere and the set-pieces. All that matters is if something's good or bad within that style.

(in reply to Pigeon Army)
Post #: 9410
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 7/9/2010 4:28:54 AM   
rawlinson

 

Posts: 45002
Joined: 13/6/2008
From: Timbuktu. Chinese or Fictional.
Now stop dithering on this and get on with your mixed list, I'm waiting to see what you pick. 

(in reply to rawlinson)
Post #: 9411
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 7/9/2010 4:47:18 AM   
Pigeon Army


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

ORIGINAL: rawlinson

quote:

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army

Touche, I guess, but TCM can't even muster good performances.


True, but how many of them had worked before? You're slating amateur actors for being amateurs.


That is as bullshit an excuse as I have ever heard. I know plenty of amateur actors who are fantastic at what they do. Casting shit amateurs does not change the fact that they are shit, and giving them the benefit of the doubt because they're amateurs just cheapens the work of amateurs who are great.

quote:

Now you can argue that it should have had both atmosphere and stronger characters, I'm saying it's not needed depending on what you're doing with the film. Compare it to literature, you seem to be saying that everything should be a novel, with the depth of character, themes and intricate plotting associated with novels. I'm saying sometimes they can be short stories, sometimes they can be a poem. TCM is closer to a poem. You don't have to like its approach, but it is a valid one.


If TCM is going to give a substantial portion of the film spent in the company of these characters, I expect more than just etchings. As I said, I can't feel anything if I'm not invested in the film, and while I gave Hooper points for actually managing setpieces that overcame this issue of expecting me to be terrified for nothing, the majority of it was tedious and left me numb.

quote:


The Thing was also made on a far larger budget than TCM and had a source text to work from along with the money to pay talented actors who'd worked in films a lot longer. TCM was made in a month on a budget that was roughly 1/10 of The Thing's. It also has a very different purpose to TCM. For The Thing to work it needs to develop a sense of paranoia and mistrust among the characters, to do that it has to develop the characters. TCM doesn't need to do that to achieve what Hooper sets out do. Again, it all comes back to what you think film should do. If you that any kind of narrative film, even one with a narrative as flimsy as TCM, needs to be character driven then you're never going to think a film like it can work. If you don't think that then it becomes about degrees of success at doing what it's attempting to do.


Okay, sure. But then let's contrast this with Halloween, which has pretty much the same purpose, pretty much the same budget (probs a bit more because it has Pleasance and all), pretty much the same running time - and then you have Laurie and Dr. Loomis, who are good characters who enable us to feel terrified for something other than the sake of being terrified. It's not empty because there's an actual investment there. I don't deny I'm not above films that are narrative-driven, but I'm not saying TCM has to be character-driven - that's a misrepresentation of my argument, which is basically that there should be something there for me to be terrified for, something for me to invest something in and to compel my fear. Otherwise it's just empty scares, and not only do they wear thin after a while, they make any part of the film that isn't scary or creepy a substantial chore to get through.

quote:


It did make it sound as if you thought it was impossible for anyone to think that they are good in any objective sense. If you're saying you accept that other people can like them, love them, even think they're the best of their genre, then it's really a pointless discussion because it simply becomes about you disliking something and me liking it and it's just an pointless discussion because nobody is ever going to convince the other any different.


I was being flippant. You do exactly the same thing, and have been quite recently in the Hall of Fame.

quote:

But Ravenous is a film that needs the characters to make it work properly, simply because of the nature of the film. You could easily make it work with Pearce being hunted down by a psychotic Carlyle with the emphasis on the set-pieces over the acting, but it would require a different script and a different director.


I'm saying TCM needs the same. If you're going to set out with a cast of characters and expect me to be anything but indifferent to their murders, I expect a little more than blank slates (or legitimately infuriating characters like the dude in the wheelchair - fuck him).

quote:


I'm not suggesting that, what I'm saying is that there are various approaches and all are equally valid. Some films work based on the human element and develop the characters more, some films don't. You can have horror films that are completely character driven, a recent film like Pontypool is a very good example of a film that would crumble if the characters didn't work, some films, like Suspiria, don't require any great depth of character because it is about the atmosphere and the set-pieces. All that matters is if something's good or bad within that style.


But if it is as you say, then does that make any issues I have with the style itself irrelevant? Let's apply the same logic to action films - if I found all the characters in an action film irritating or bland, does it matter? After all, it's all about the setpieces and the constant adrenaline rush of the narrative - they're hardly character-driven.

quote:

ORIGINAL: rawlinson

Now stop dithering on this and get on with your mixed list, I'm waiting to see what you pick. 


I want to start with a film, but the HoF is stopping me getting to it.


_____________________________

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 rawlinson)
Post #: 9412
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 7/9/2010 5:14:36 AM   
rawlinson

 

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

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army

That is as bullshit an excuse as I have ever heard. I know plenty of amateur actors who are fantastic at what they do. Casting shit amateurs does not change the fact that they are shit, and giving them the benefit of the doubt because they're amateurs just cheapens the work of amateurs who are great.


But I don't think they're all that shit. Hansen uses his physical presence to create a great boogeyman character, Burns is given little to do but I think she does it quite well and I think she was a talented performer (Her Linda Kasabian especially was well done) None of them are among the greatest performers who ever lived, but I don't expect that much better from amateur actors on their first film working on a script that didn't actually stretch them. That's not being dismissive of amateurs, I'm just saying that while some first-timers are excellent, it's usually more likely that they're still finding themselves and the performances are usually average at best, especially in a horror film that was made in a bit of a rush. Compare like to like and compare them to other amateurs, fine. But you've mostly been using other horror films as a ref point and most of them feature actors who had been around a bit.

quote:


Okay, sure. But then let's contrast this with Halloween, which has pretty much the same purpose, pretty much the same budget (probs a bit more because it has Pleasance and all), pretty much the same running time - and then you have Laurie and Dr. Loomis, who are good characters who enable us to feel terrified for something other than the sake of being terrified.


Well, it had twice the budget of TCM and it was made by a director who wasn't making his first film. You have to take that into account, Halloween was Carpenter's third film. But I think there is a different approach in that we have a smaller group of people to deal with in Halloween and other than Laurie, most of them are wiped out fairly swiftly. Also, Halloween plays it more for suspense than TCM does, so they approach the subject in different ways.  I don't disagree that the characters are stronger in Halloween, but I think there's differences between the two films that are important.

quote:

I was being flippant. You do exactly the same thing, and have been quite recently in the Hall of Fame.


Have I? And this doesn't change the fact that you're just trying to stir up debates because you thrive on them and you're missing your regular sparring partner. WELL I AM NOT YOUR WHORE!

quote:

But if it is as you say, then does that make any issues I have with the style itself irrelevant?


No, it just means that style of film is highly unlikely to work for you. If you have a basic problem with that approach, you're unlikely to find much of worth in films that work within that style.

quote:

Let's apply the same logic to action films - if I found all the characters in an action film irritating or bland, does it matter? After all, it's all about the setpieces and the constant adrenaline rush of the narrative - they're hardly character-driven.


Honestly, I'd say it depends on the approach something takes to action cinema, you can't use one rule for an entire genre. A film like Die Hard is very different to Crank, which is very different to Pearl Harbor. Die Hard I'd put closer to Halloween, it spends more time with the lead character and spends more time trying to create suspense rather than just balls out action. Crank I'd put closer to TCM because it is powered by the action above all else. Both succeed at what they're trying to do to various levels. Where something like Pearl Harbor fails miserably because the nature of the story requires you to care for the characters and the writing and the acting is so weak that it becomes impossible to do so.

quote:

I want to start with a film, but the HoF is stopping me getting to it.


Not one you can do from memory?


(in reply to Pigeon Army)
Post #: 9413
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 7/9/2010 5:39:11 AM   
Pigeon Army


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

ORIGINAL: rawlinson

But I don't think they're all that shit. Hansen uses his physical presence to create a great boogeyman character,


About the only good performance in the film, honestly.

quote:

Burns is given little to do but I think she does it quite well and I think she was a talented performer (Her Linda Kasabian especially was well done)


Not here. She's just as bad as the rest of the 'teenagers'. Shrill and guilty of some quite considerable overacting.

quote:

None of them are among the greatest performers who ever lived, but I don't expect that much better from amateur actors on their first film working on a script that didn't actually stretch them. That's not being dismissive of amateurs, I'm just saying that while some first-timers are excellent, it's usually more likely that they're still finding themselves and the performances are usually average at best, especially in a horror film that was made in a bit of a rush. Compare like to like and compare them to other amateurs, fine. But you've mostly been using other horror films as a ref point and most of them feature actors who had been around a bit.


I don't see why they shouldn't be held to a high standard, though - just because you're an amateur on your first film, doesn't mean the standards drop.

Also, I was using other horror films as reference points for characters, not actors. I'm not expecting any Kurt Russell-Donald Pleasance-Guy Pearce shit from them, but I still expect quality.

quote:


Well, it had twice the budget of TCM


I still don't see why this is an argument against reinforcing and building your characters. Horror setpieces require more set-ups and more people, which means more money is spent and your budget goes up. Some of the stuff at the first house (and some of the third act - the whole thing with the truck driver was pointless, and you know that that cost money given the number of set-ups involved) could easily have been pared down and more time could've been spent developing the characters or at least giving them personalities outside of "Soon-to-be Roast #1" and "Soon-to-be Roast #2". Those take fewer set-ups, less time, require less people, and could've easily cost less money. A low budget is not an excuse for having shit characters.

quote:

But I think there is a different approach in that we have a smaller group of people to deal with in Halloween and other than Laurie, most of them are wiped out fairly swiftly.


I don't know what your definition of 'swift' is, but they're wiped out at pretty much the same pace as TCM. And yes, there's a different approach, but note I only mentioned Loomis and Laurie - TCM doesn't even have equivalent characters. The villains, perhaps, but they tend to caricature and the only thing really developed is their bizarre family dynamic.

quote:

Have I?


Aliens? Moulin Rouge!?

quote:

WELL I AM YOUR WHORE!


Ewwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww.

Ewwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww.

Ewww.

quote:

Not one you can do from memory?


When you see it go up, you'll know exactly why it needs another viewing.


_____________________________

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 rawlinson)
Post #: 9414
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 7/9/2010 6:00:06 AM   
rawlinson

 

Posts: 45002
Joined: 13/6/2008
From: Timbuktu. Chinese or Fictional.
I think we should just call a draw on this one, because neither of us is going to back down and the circles are making me dizzy. 

quote:

When you see it go up, you'll know exactly why it needs another viewing.


Well you or Fritzl needs to update your lists soon, otherwise I might have to break my no-lists vow.

(in reply to Pigeon Army)
Post #: 9415
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 7/9/2010 6:13:26 AM   
Pigeon Army


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

ORIGINAL: rawlinson

I think we should just call a draw on this one, because neither of us is going to back down and the circles are making me dizzy. 


You mean you give up?

My tenacity wins again.


_____________________________

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 rawlinson)
Post #: 9416
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 7/9/2010 6:33:55 AM   
Gimli The Dwarf


Posts: 77513
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Central Park Zoo
TCM is awesome. There, it's settled now!

_____________________________

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 Pigeon Army)
Post #: 9417
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 7/9/2010 7:55:32 AM   
Pigeon Army


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

ORIGINAL: Gimli The Dwarf

TCM is awesome. There, it's settled now!


No it's not.

Can open worms everywhere


_____________________________

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 #: 9418
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 7/9/2010 11:00:14 AM   
Gram123

 

Posts: 5537
Joined: 19/1/2006
From: Reino Unido
012) This is England  (Shane Meadows, UK, 2006, Broadcast) - 7.5

A re-watch as it was on Ch.4 last night, ahead of the spinoff series which starts tonight. Still good, and I'm looking forward to the series, if a little treipidatious.

Where was the film actually set? In some listings it said it was set in Grimsby, and I know parts of it were filmed there, and Turgoose is from there, but there weren't many other Humberside accents to be heard. I've also seen it said it was set in Sheffield, but that can't be right, as Shaun was by the sea in a couple of scenes.

Ha. Just realised he was called Shaun Field - Shane/Shaun - Meadows/Field. Slow on the uptake, I know...

_____________________________

Gram123's Top Songs Project

(in reply to Pigeon Army)
Post #: 9419
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 7/9/2010 2:26:51 PM   
paul_ie86


Posts: 11421
Joined: 4/1/2007
From: Chelsea Hotel #2

quote:

ORIGINAL: Gimli The Dwarf

TCM is awesome. There, it's settled now!


Yeah, they show some good films on there. I think they're showing Deadwood now as well.

_____________________________

My Group Project's facebook page. Please like

(in reply to Gimli The Dwarf)
Post #: 9420
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