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RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 1:41:38 PM   
MOTH

 

Posts: 3479
Joined: 3/10/2005
From: Sittin' on the dock of the bay
Odd Man Out (Carol Reed, 1947)
Starts out as a conventional thriller, before developing into a nightmarish, almost metaphysical affair, as the dying anti-hero on the run encounters several disparate characters in his delirious state. Tremendous, deep photography lends it real atmosphere, with good performances (despite some variable Irish accents). For all that, some parts are a little too surreal and/or philosophical, which undermines the pacing and tension somewhat. (7/10)
Spot of trivia: The snugs in the Crown Bar might be a good place to lie low for a while if you've been shot, but they're a fecking disaster if there's 9 of you in there and you have to get out for a slash.


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Post #: 1261
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 4:53:52 PM   
m_er


Posts: 3968
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Istanpool
in no particular order

Avatar 3-D (2009) 10/10
Fahrenheit 9/11 (2004) 10/10
Fargo (1996) 10/10
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005) 8/10
Cast Away (2000) 10/10
Lost in Translation (2003) 9/10
Paths of Glory (1957) 9/10
The Ghost and the Darkness (1996) 10/10
Traitor (2008) 8/10
Death at a Funeral (2007) 8/10
Donnie Brasco (1997) 8/10
Taken (2008) 4/10
Children Of Men 8/10
The Hudsucker Proxy (1994)
Paths Of Glory (1957,Stanley Kubrick) 9/10 excellent war-drama
Traitor (2008) 9/10 great action-thought-provoking thriller on terrorism
Death At A Funeral 8/10
Pineapple Express 7/10
Taken 5/10
Ghostbusters 6/10
Ghostbusters II 6/10
Human Traffic 5/10
Sherlock Holmes (2009) 7/10

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Post #: 1262
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 5:06:01 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54674
Joined: 1/10/2005
quote:

ORIGINAL: MOTH

Spot of trivia: The snugs in the Crown Bar might be a good place to lie low for a while if you've been shot, but they're a fecking disaster if there's 9 of you in there and you have to get out for a slash.



They're a fecking disaster if there are 4 of you and you aren't particularly intimate beforehand. You damn well are after

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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

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Post #: 1263
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 6:57:01 PM   
Timmy_Brisby_05


Posts: 2675
Joined: 16/11/2005
From: Grim up North
POC: At World's End
Fantastic Mr. Fox

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Post #: 1264
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 8:10:16 PM   
Miles Messervy 007


Posts: 6884
Joined: 11/2/2009
8. Ballada o soldate [Ballad of a Soldier] (1959, Chukhrai)
I've had this for a while, but siegfried's exremely high praise for it plus the fact that it would be a good excuse not to translate another bloody text in my Russian lesson made me finally check it out.
I certainly don't regret it . To state the obvious, the film's cinematography is exceptional, might be a strong contender for my top 10 b-and-w films ever in that regard.
The acting, despite the leads being amateurs, is also great.
It has an odd mixture of bleakness (we are warned the first minute that the soldier in question is going to die in the war) and hope, which helps it create a unique feel. There are many themes which I shall not go into, but for now, I'm just going to say that this is a great road movie as well as a great war movie, and my teacher's annoying comments and a few slightly contrived moments made me give it only an 8. It might easily become a 10 on re-watches.

10. Nosferatu, eine Symphonie des Grauens [Nosferatu, a Symphony of Terror] (1922, Murnau)
I'm not a huge fan of horror films, nor silents, but I'm trying to amend that. This may be one of the most iconic silent films ever made, with Schreck's scary performance especially being classic. Is its reputation deserved? Not quite, in my opinion. Is it a good film? For sure. It's very much a product of its own time (apart from Schreck, the amount of over-acting would even embarrass Pacino), but that's what so great about it, in a way. If I hadn't known that film wasn't around in the 1840s I might have presumed it was from then, as I really did feel transported into another time. The cinematography and tinting are also great. However, the story feels weak (I haven't read Dracula, BTW), and by the end I just wanted the film to end, which might be a sign of my ADHD (), or the fact that I watched it the day before my exam, or might just be a sign that it hasn't dated well in terms of pacing. Regardless, it's a very strong 7 and I certainly look forward to seeing more Murnau (especially Sunrise and City Girl).

16. Foolish Wives (1922, von Stroheim)
Erich's films were notoriously butchered by his producers, but even knowing that Greed is actually a 10-hour-film I decided against watching the 4-hour-version. This seemed a perfect replacement.
I must say, I didn't show this film enough respect, as I wasn't paying attention for about half an hour of the film (), but nevertheless I have to review it.
Von Stroheim's performance stands out in the film. The others aren't bad either, but he is just about perfect, expressive and yet not OTT.
The film was apparently the most expensive film ever back in 1922, and the sets are quite impressive (though the quality of the print is far from perfect).
I don't know why I keep talking about the technical aspects, I usually do that when I have nothing to say The film is deliciously amoral (and the stream-of-consciousness titles contribute to that nicely), but unfortunately is weak on plot (ostensibly an effect of the heavy cuts, but the film is too long even in its present form, too bad they didn't have mini-series back then). Overall I'll give it a high 6, certainly worth a watch but nothing too great.

< Message edited by Miles Messervy 007 -- 27/1/2010 5:28:54 PM >


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Post #: 1265
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 8:24:22 PM   
MOTH

 

Posts: 3479
Joined: 3/10/2005
From: Sittin' on the dock of the bay

quote:

ORIGINAL: elab49

quote:

ORIGINAL: MOTH

Spot of trivia: The snugs in the Crown Bar might be a good place to lie low for a while if you've been shot, but they're a fecking disaster if there's 9 of you in there and you have to get out for a slash.



They're a fecking disaster if there are 4 of you and you aren't particularly intimate beforehand. You damn well are after


This is also true. Although you say it like rubbing up against strangers is a bad thing.....

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Post #: 1266
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 8:40:29 PM   
Dantes Inferno


Posts: 5887
Joined: 27/10/2007
From: Norway
8. Donnie Darko (2001, Kelly) – 6/10*
Unengaging, sub-Mulholland Drive like film where Jake Gyllenhaal meets a large rabbit and has to save the world. Maybe. Despite its best efforts, the film never achieves the atmosphere it so desperately yearns to have, and the actors never give the impression they’re up to the task handed to them.

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Post #: 1267
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 8:43:39 PM   
GoodBadGroovy


Posts: 32
Joined: 30/12/2009
After the Thin Man (Dir. W.S. Van Dyke, 1936)
An excellent sequal that takes all the great aspects from the first film - Nick and Nora's wit and interplay - and improves on everything else.  A far more engaging mystery with a much better pay off and a better supporting cast that means everything pre-murder is far more entertaining than in the first film.  On top of that Van Dyke's directing is improved, with a very well put together and tense scene played out in silence as Nick investigates an apartment.  It's going to be hard for the rest of the series to top that.
4.5

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Post #: 1268
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 9:10:59 PM   
DCMaximo


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

ORIGINAL: GoodBadGroovy

After the Thin Man (Dir. W.S. Van Dyke, 1936)
An excellent sequal that takes all the great aspects from the first film - Nick and Nora's wit and interplay - and improves on everything else.  A far more engaging mystery with a much better pay off and a better supporting cast that means everything pre-murder is far more entertaining than in the first film.  On top of that Van Dyke's directing is improved, with a very well put together and tense scene played out in silence as Nick investigates an apartment.  It's going to be hard for the rest of the series to top that.
4.5



It doesn't, though that isn't to say the others are bad, just that ATTM is superb. The rest are all still excellent, with only Song Of The Thin Man falling below 7/10 for me. Powell and Loy's chemistry doesn't falter throughout the series.

< Message edited by DCMaximo -- 22/1/2010 9:11:30 PM >


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Post #: 1269
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 9:15:46 PM   
paul_ie86


Posts: 11422
Joined: 4/1/2007
From: Chelsea Hotel #2
9. Toy Story 2 (Lasseter, 1999)

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Post #: 1270
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 9:39:04 PM   
DCMaximo


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

8. Sherlock Holmes (2009, Ritchie) 8/10
It's been getting mixed reviews, but count me in as a fan of Ritchie's version of Holmes. Direction wise, it's the best work of Ritchie's career, with his trademark gimmickery pretty much phased out. Downey Jr and Jude Law both put in good performances and their chemistry really helps carry the film, while Mark Strong is suitably cold and calculating as the villain. What really impresses is that, rather than extending the length of the film with too many action scenes, Ritchie allows Holmes and Watson's relationship to take centre stage, making what fight scenes there are mean more, while giving the audience a reason to care about the pair.

14. Vanishing Point (1973, Serafian) 7/10
When unemployed two years ago, I watched enough Top Gear on Dave to learn than Vanishing Point features Jeremy Clarkson's favourite ever car chase. What I didn't realise is that pretty much the entire film is a car chase, with Barry Newman's Kowalski spending the film evading the police in his Dodge Challenger. Despite this, the film never becomes dull, thanks to Kowalski's backstory being filled out with a series of flashbacks, while his journey is given suitable narrative by Cleavon Little's sightless DJ. Even the shocking ending makes sense in context with the rest of the film, and it remains enjoyable throughout.

17. Ghost Rider (2007, Johnson) 5/10
Rewatched in wake of the news that Ghost Rider 2 is in development and I realised that the sequel should be far more entertaining than the first. Too much of the film's running time is dedicated to either giving us the origins of the character (a feat which could easily have been done in half the time) or on Nicolas Cage's dull relationship with Eva Mendes, which feels a bit too serious for a film where the hero is a biker with a flaming skull. This sadly means that Wes Bentley's villain seems like a mere afterthought and film suffers for lack of any real tension. It's a shame, as Cage is typically watchable and the fight scenes all look impressive, both factors which bode well for part two.

Performances:
10. Robert Downey Jr as Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock Holmes)

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Post #: 1271
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 10:23:33 PM   
Deviation


Posts: 27284
Joined: 2/6/2006
From: Enemies of Film HQ
Moods of the Sea (John Hoffman and Slavko Vorkapich, 1941)- USA- 9/10

The sea set to the music of Mendelssohn, mesmerizing.

Modern Times (Charlie Chaplin, 1936)- USA - 9/10

It's not the majesty that is City Lights, but it still is a great film. Quite funny (funnier than City Lights too) and filled with many a brilliant moment (read, every two seconds), but it simply lacks that emotional punch that made City Lights such a beauty.

Letters from Iwo Jima (Clint Eastwood, 2006)- USA - 8.9/10

I believe this was Eastwood's best film of the last decade, and it is also possibly my favorite of his. Stunning looking, well written characters, Eastwood's mostly great direction, visceral action sequences...it works better than it should (some scenes feel manipulative or contrived, especially those flashbacks, yet they work, they work very well) and it really is an emotional piece of work.

Ride the High Country (Sam Peckinpah, 1962)- USA - 8.5/10

Closer to Cable Houge and Junior Bonner than to Straw Dogs and Wild Bunch. Great performances, script and direction, great shootouts, at times touching and also has a fine story with well written characters, as the older ones, with Randolph Scott and Joel McCrea the old heroes of the once lawless west who are slowly forgotten and soon dead. Shame that the middle act is a bit of a slog (I was a bit sick and tired, maybe that took out a bit of the fun of those moments) and the always frequent, constant, over-DRAMATIC soundtrack is a distraction.




< Message edited by Deviation -- 22/1/2010 10:52:49 PM >


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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

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Post #: 1272
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 10:32:40 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54674
Joined: 1/10/2005
quote:

ORIGINAL: Deviation

Ride the High Country (Sam Peckinpah, 1962)- USA - 8/10

Shame that the middle act is a bit of a slog and the always frequent, constant DRAMATIC soundtrack is a distraction.






Back to your bug-infested homeland philistine - Rick and I have hopefully made sure this turns up acceptably high in the top 1000.

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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

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Post #: 1273
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 10:43:12 PM   
Rhubarb


Posts: 24509
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: No Direction Home
27 Cassandra's Dream (Woody Allen)

Whoever told me this wasn't a comedy was dead wrong. Its not an intentional comedy mind. Or any good.

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Post #: 1274
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 10:48:27 PM   
Deviation


Posts: 27284
Joined: 2/6/2006
From: Enemies of Film HQ
It is a very good film elab, it is simple yet complex, the script is really good, and some of dialogue is fantastic. But once they are mining village my interest somewhat waved. Plus I was a bit sick.


Actually fuck it, I'm rating it higher. That ending alone deserve a higher rating.


Oh that soundtrack is really really annoying.


< Message edited by Deviation -- 22/1/2010 10:53:59 PM >


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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

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Post #: 1275
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 10:50:40 PM   
Timmy_Brisby_05


Posts: 2675
Joined: 16/11/2005
From: Grim up North
Labyrinth (1986) 8/10

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Post #: 1276
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 10:54:22 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54674
Joined: 1/10/2005
Good man, that man. Don't the smiles on their faces as they start that walk just send chills down your spine? Can you believe that Scott used to be one of the most wooden actors going? THis and the Boetticher stuff signal an astonishing change in his performances.

quote:

  27 Cassandra's Dream (Woody Allen)

Whoever told me this wasn't a comedy was dead wrong. Its not an intentional comedy mind. Or any good


That about sums it up. Yup.

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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 #: 1277
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 10:59:04 PM   
Deviation


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

ORIGINAL: elab49

Good man, that man. Don't the smiles on their faces as they start that walk just send chills down your spine? Can you believe that Scott used to be one of the most wooden actors going? THis and the Boetticher stuff signal an astonishing change in his performances.



Wasn't RtHC his last film?



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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 #: 1278
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 11:01:35 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54674
Joined: 1/10/2005
MMm - isn't it frustrating? Just getting better and better and then he decides to sod off and enjoy retirement.

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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 #: 1279
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 11:05:55 PM   
Deviation


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

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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

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Post #: 1280
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 22/1/2010 11:09:29 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54674
Joined: 1/10/2005
quote:

ORIGINAL: Deviation

The bastard.


Damn straight - selfish one, too.

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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

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Post #: 1281
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 23/1/2010 2:21:08 AM   
rawlinson

 

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

ORIGINAL: Deviation

Moods of the Sea (John Hoffman and Slavko Vorkapich, 1941)- USA- 9/10

The sea set to the music of Mendelssohn, mesmerizing.


 

(in reply to Deviation)
Post #: 1282
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 23/1/2010 4:16:25 AM   
paul_ie86


Posts: 11422
Joined: 4/1/2007
From: Chelsea Hotel #2
8. Days of Wine and Roses (Blake, 1962)
The second Edwards/Lemmon collaboration I have seen this week, this is my favourite. Lemmon is fantastic Joe Clay, whose social drinking becomes a problem, and who starts his wife, Kirsten (Lee Remick) on the same path. Both leads are excellent and Jack is surprisingly good at playing a bastard in this. Unlike in The Apartment, his natural likeability doesn't overshadow the character's bad points. The cinematography is great, especially in the greenhouse scene when Joe is looking for a drink bottle he hid in there. An all round excellent film.

10. South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut (Parker, 1999)
This film has aged incredibly well, with the message about censorship probably more relevant today than it was at the time of release. The songs are still really good with the parody ballad Up There possibly being my favourite, but it is hard to choose. I also liked Clooney's cameo. AND IT HAS BRENT SPINER AS CONAN O' BRIEN.


< Message edited by paul_ie86 -- 23/1/2010 4:31:47 AM >


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Post #: 1283
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 23/1/2010 6:37:54 AM   
Gimli The Dwarf


Posts: 78115
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Central Park Zoo
3. Sherlock Holmes (1st view, 2009, Guy Ritchie) - 4/5*
A rewatch has seen this jump a few spots. I had too much of a good time for it to not do so.


11. Timecrimes/Los Cronocrímenes (1st view, 2007, Nacho Vigalondo) - 4/5*
I'm still trying to figure out some of the logic of the Spanish time travel film. Not helped by the fact that the main character makes some barny decisions and he tries to cope with multiple versions of himself. It's making my head hurt.




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Post #: 1284
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 23/1/2010 7:55:43 AM   
siegfried


Posts: 13582
Joined: 16/12/2007
From: Long ago and far away

quote:

ORIGINAL: Miles Messervy 007

8. Ballada o soldate [Ballad of a Soldier] (1959, Chukhrai)
I've had this for a while, but siegfried's exremely high praise for it plus the fact that it would be a good excuse not to translate another bloody text in my Russian lesson made me finally check it out.
I certainly don't regret it . To state the obvious, the film's cinematography is exceptional, might be a strong contender for my top 10 b-and-w films ever in that regard.
The acting, despite the leads being amateurs, is also great.
It has an odd mixture of bleakness (we are warned the first minute that the soldier in question is going to die in the war) and hope, which helps it create a unique feel. There are many themes which I shall not go into, but for now, I'm just going to say that this is a great road movie as well as a great war movie, and my teacher's annoying comments and a few slightly contrived moments made me give it only an 8. It might easily become a 10 on re-watches.


Happy to know that you obviously enjoyed this as much as I do.
If you haven't already seen it, I'd also recommend The Cranes Are Flying, also a very beautiful and moving film.

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Post #: 1285
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 23/1/2010 11:29:10 AM   
Pigeon Army


Posts: 14612
Joined: 29/1/2006
From: Pixar HQ, George Lucas' Office.
02. The Royal Tenenbaums (2001, Anderson, USA) - 4.5/5
Royal Tenenbaum is dying. At least, that's what he's telling his estranged family, but only as part of a ruse in order to insert himself back into their lives. Unfortunately, his estranged family isn't keen on letting him back into their lives, even under such a cover, and what follows is a film that manages to be simultaneously idiosyncratic and universal, affected and human, a film that relies as much on a highly individualised style as it does on heart-tugging substance. Wes Anderson tells the tale of the Tenenbaums in a wholly Anderson style - characters defined by traits that are as much weaknesses as they are strengths; vivid primary colours (particularly yellows); a penchant for symmetrically-framed mid-shots; enough Helvetica font to drown the creator of Comic Sans. While this style was employed to great effect in The Darjeeling Limited and The Fantastic Mr. Fox, it's here that Anderson nails it, as it works most harmoniously with the narrative of the film. And what a marvelous narrative it is - while many point to Anderson's style and fondness for dysfunctional families with affected speech patterns as hurdles to overcome, they're nothing of the sort, and that's most obvious here. The Royal Tenenbaums is endowed with one of the most subtle, thoughtful, intelligently-told, heart-warming narratives of American cinema in the last ten years. While the characters may seem defined by certain traits (and clothes), there's far more to them than one could ever imagine, and Anderson's measured characterisation and easy pace wins us around to each and every character. It's something best realised in the Archer Avenue tracking shot near the end of the film, a majestic piece of cinematography that also acts as an unbelievably powerful emotional climax to the film, all thanks to Ben Stiller (in a career-best performance, and his isn't the only one) and his delivery of one simple line - "It's been a rough year, Dad". Intricate, but never overwhelming; stylish, but never garish; funny, but never fishing; emotional, but never blatant; The Royal Tenenbaums is a rich tapestry of relationships, of family, of humanity. Few films are more difficult to not love.

11. Alien 3 (Assembly Cut) (1992, Fincher, USA) - 4/5
Much maligned on initial release, Alien 3 has since experienced a critical renaissance of sorts after director David Fincher's rise to prominence and the emergence of the Alien 3 Assembly Cut, which adds about thirty minutes to the whole thing. Having not seen the Theatrical Cut, I can't comment on how much better the Assembly Cut is than it, but given that the Alien 3 Assembly Cut is the best Alien film I've seen so far, I'm going to assume that this critical renaissance is deserved. Fincher's direction style is gritty and stylised, far removed from the work of Cameron and Scott in the previous two films, but probably closer to Scott's in this regard. Some absolutely stunning set designs and lighting work (easily on a par with the best of Alien - namely, the Derelict Ship where all the eggs are) are complemented by Fincher's energetic camera, whether it's the reverent filming of the dark and angular Assembly Hall or the nabbing of Raimi's 'evil-cam' in a riveting bait-and-chase routine conducted by the prisoners near the end of the film to help flush out the new, improved, dog-like, size-changing Alien. Fincher's direction also does a great service to the messy but intriguing script, with Vincent Ward's 'monks on a wooded planet' routine being pillaged and dismantled like an unlocked Rolls Royce in a bad neighbourhood and resulting in the current product. While the prisoners aren't necessarily well-drawn, Ripley is as well-realised as she has ever been, the tough routine she has slowly developed across the trilogy coming to a peak here, and characters like Charles S. Dutton's authoritative "murderer and rapistofwimmin" Dillon and Charles Dance's reserved prison doctor Clemens make for excellent support. A gripping thriller that also couples as an interesting and different direction for the trilogy, Alien 3 may have suffered all kinds of executive meddling on the way to the theatres - but if this Assembly Cut is the closest we'll get to Fincher's original vision, then it's a pretty good compromise all the same.

14.    8½ (1963, Fellini, ITA/FRA) – 4/5
For the first hour of Fellini's supposed masterpiece, I was bored. It may well have been because I was rather tired today, it may have been because I didn't 'get' it, whatever, but after the interesting and visually astounding 'party' of sorts at the ampitheatre, I felt lost. Characters came and went without too much fuss, whatever themes Fellini was attempting to get across were somewhat lost, the editing felt weird and disorienting, the narrative kind of winding back around itself and going places I couldn't follow. Then, at about an hour in, I suddenly started enjoying it. I don't know what it was that triggered it - I think maybe it was Luisa's introduction fully into the narrative, but I can't be sure. However, that's besides the point - what started as a bit of an incomprehensible mess for me suddenly became a lot more lucid and clear, and while I'm still unsure of and not particularly excited by that first hour, once the film grabbed me, I didn't want it to let go. The captivating, heady dream sequences integrate with the narrative until the seams become indistinguishable from the rest of the fabric; Marcello Mastroianni's performance takes a sudden turn into greatness, a mix of intense self-loathing and intense self-loving; Fellini messes with temporal and geographical consistency so that days and long distances merge seamlessly into each other; the cinematography, always amazing up to that point, becomes the kind of magical excellence I'd hoped for; and Nino Rota's score ties the whole thing together, brilliant and exhilarating as it is. But, ultimately, the most important thing is that it all made sense - for all the talk about it being the definitive film about cinema, it's not so much that as it is a film about the artist and a film about ego. The process of creating cinema isn't under the lens as much as the artist conducting that process - and it's a sensational, individual, confrontational dissection of that artist, Guido Anselmi, presenting him as a man lost in memories and dreams, a man who reaches for the stars only to find the stars aren't good enough for him. Mastroianni's performance guides that, and if it weren't for the opening hour, I would probably love this film unequivocally. Perhaps, on another viewing, I will, knowing now what I know. But for now, I don't.

17. Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004, McKay, USA) - 4/5**
Outside of Stranger Than Fiction, this is probably the only good "starring Will Ferrell" film out there. It may have its detractors (especially on this board), but I can trust Anchorman to bring the funny every time, and I can say that of few films. It's unrepentantly silly, takes wild tangents and can frequently be juvenile, but there's something so appealing about that all the same. There are a million quotable lines, a million moments of inspired hilarity, a million character moments that just set me off - it's excellent, go-to entertainment for when I need a good time or when I need cheering up.

28. [Rec] (2007, Balagueró & Plaza, SPN) – 3.5/5 ***PROBABLE SPOILERS AHEAD***
For what it's worth, [Rec] can be a pretty effective horror when it wants to be. Proving that conventional jump scares, while sometimes cheap, never go out of fashion, directors Balaguero and Plaza show just how well one can pull off a period of silence brought to a startling halt by an expected and, yet, unexpected image and an accompanying loud noise. Be it the boy in the attic, Guillem's 'turning', any scene involving the 'turned' Jennifer, the finale - Balaguero and Plaza work that tried-and-true method of frightening their audience with style and intelligence, never going overboard with it or treating the audience as fools. They also stick to the conceit well, and the film is buoyed by strong performances, particularly from Manuela Velasco as cute-as-a-button reporter Angela and Jorge Serrano as panicky cop Joven. However, [Rec] falls prey to another common horror film trope - stupid protagonists. While some moments are completely justified in-character (Jennifer's mother refusing to hand her over, the locking of Guillem in the room with the two zombies), there are moments where things just get ridiculous. Health inspector bitten and about to turn in a partially blocked-off hallway? Hell, let's stand right in front of it and wait for him to crush my head! I have a big-arse poking stick to very effectively kill zombies with? Fuck, let's ditch it after using it once! I have to catch a zombie girl and inject her with a fluid that'll kill her? Damn, I'll just repeatedly turn away from her and not use the gun I have to put her down first and then inject her! It's like zombie-ism isn't the only thing contagious in that apartment building, and as common as it is to horror films, it just detracts from my enjoyment to no end.


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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 siegfried)
Post #: 1286
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 23/1/2010 12:38:42 PM   
Dantes Inferno


Posts: 5887
Joined: 27/10/2007
From: Norway
A fine pai... uh... group of reviews there, PA. You've really become talented with that pen.... or keyboard, or... whatever. I don't agree with you on The Royal Tenenbaums, though. Not much of a fan. Never took to 8 1/2 either. I love Fellini, but I don't love that film. As far as metafilms go, I prefer Barton Fink and Adaptation.

I'm the opposite of you as far as Alien 3 goes. I have seen the theatrical cut, but not the director's cut, and consider it the weakest film in the series (and I never was that big a fan of any of them). I have both cuts, though.

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(in reply to Pigeon Army)
Post #: 1287
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 23/1/2010 1:02:34 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54674
Joined: 1/10/2005
quote:

Alien 3 has since experienced a critical renaissance of sorts after director David Fincher's rise to prominence


I tend to think this is the key part. Some Fincher fans have made an assessment solely because they like the director and not because the film itself merits it. None of the cuts have changed my first opinion from my first cinema viewing. IMO Ill-thought out and very problematic.

That group of viewing looks like a really awful night for me, with my only 'like' being the lowest one, sadly.

_____________________________

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 Dantes Inferno)
Post #: 1288
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 23/1/2010 2:07:22 PM   
Piles


Posts: 5545
Joined: 6/8/2007
From: Whalley Range
quote:

ORIGINAL = PA

17. Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004, McKay, USA) - 4/5**
Outside of Stranger Than Fiction, this is probably the only good "starring Will Ferrell" film out there. It may have its detractors (especially on this board), but I can trust Anchorman to bring the funny every time, and I can say that of few films. It's unrepentantly silly, takes wild tangents and can frequently be juvenile, but there's something so appealing about that all the same. There are a million quotable lines, a million moments of inspired hilarity, a million character moments that just set me off - it's excellent, go-to entertainment for when I need a good time or when I need cheering up.


Really? His cameos in films like "Zoolander", "Starsky and Hutch", and even "Austin Powers" are better than this lump of shit. I understand that it's supposed to be nonsense and just exists for entertainment via silliness, but I'd even take "Talladega Nights" and "Blades of Glory" over this.

< Message edited by Piles -- 23/1/2010 2:08:04 PM >


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Top 100 Moz Songs / Top 100 Films

(in reply to Pigeon Army)
Post #: 1289
RE: Top 100 Films I've Watched This Year: 2010 - 23/1/2010 2:37:28 PM   
rawlinson

 

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

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army

28. [Rec] (2007, Balagueró & Plaza, SPN) – 3.5/5 ***PROBABLE SPOILERS AHEAD***
For what it's worth, [Rec] can be a pretty effective horror when it wants to be. Proving that conventional jump scares, while sometimes cheap, never go out of fashion, directors Balaguero and Plaza show just how well one can pull off a period of silence brought to a startling halt by an expected and, yet, unexpected image and an accompanying loud noise.


You could always just call it "the bus". It's been perfectly good terminology since it was invented nearly 70 years ago.

And Rec getting a lower score than Anchorman, 8.5 and Alien 3 means you suck arse.  

(in reply to Pigeon Army)
Post #: 1290
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