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RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV)

 
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RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 14/6/2010 11:30:17 PM   
Miles Messervy 007


Posts: 6884
Joined: 11/2/2009
"He"?
Looking forward to the thread

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

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

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Post #: 31
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 14/6/2010 11:32:36 PM   
swordsandsandals


Posts: 12571
Joined: 6/1/2006
From: A magical forest
I dunno, I just thought The Dude was a guy.

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Rawlinson

Swords is right about everything.



quote:

ORIGINAL: Hood_Man

Swords smells like bum.



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Post #: 32
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 14/6/2010 11:35:19 PM   
Miles Messervy 007


Posts: 6884
Joined: 11/2/2009
With a man-crush on Cagney?

_____________________________

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 swordsandsandals)
Post #: 33
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 14/6/2010 11:35:34 PM   
TheDudeAbides


Posts: 783
Joined: 15/1/2006
From: In the neighbourhood, feeling a bit daffy.
quote:

ORIGINAL: swordsandsandals

I dunno, I just thought The Dude was a guy.


The number of times I have regretted my rash choice of name... I may have to change it one of the days to the one I use everywhere else, which has the advantages of both being a film reference and emphasising my girlishness.

EDIT: Miles, there is absolutely nothing sexual going on between me and Cagney. Me and Joel McCrea on the other hand... My countdown for him would consist solely of pictures


< Message edited by TheDudeAbides -- 14/6/2010 11:36:33 PM >


_____________________________

Reviews, film chat and the like at http://resilientlittlemuscle.blogspot.com

The Oxford Student - proud home of a film section somewhere between Siskel and Ebert: http://oxfordstudent.com/?cat=11

"Hammy is a stretch, I personally think he was just over zealous."
- IMDb reviewer on Dick Powell

"Good night, Papa. Machs gut."

(in reply to swordsandsandals)
Post #: 34
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 14/6/2010 11:36:21 PM   
Miles Messervy 007


Posts: 6884
Joined: 11/2/2009
There are no name changes unfortunately Nobody regrets it more than Fritzl, I bet

_____________________________

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 TheDudeAbides)
Post #: 35
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 14/6/2010 11:53:31 PM   
FritzlFan


Posts: 4793
Joined: 19/11/2008
From: Bristol
I expect not.

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Miles Messervy 007

Child labour is necessary in the short term




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Post #: 36
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 15/6/2010 12:40:08 AM   
rawlinson

 

Posts: 45002
Joined: 13/6/2008
From: Timbuktu. Chinese or Fictional.
On the Close front, t.v. wise I don't think she ever really went away. If you look at the years between 88 and 2005 (When she made The Shield) she got something like 6 Emmy nominations for acting and another 2 for producing. I think the critical love was always there, she always turns up on the lists of great performers to never win an Oscar, but the profile just faded.

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Post #: 37
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 15/6/2010 4:46:02 AM   
Gimli The Dwarf


Posts: 78115
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Central Park Zoo
Whenever I see Close I always think of her in Mars Atacks. "The Nancy Reagan chandelier!" At her best in The Shield for me though.

Good first choice to start the list!







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Fellow scientists, poindexters, geeks.

Yeah, Mr. White! Yeah, science!

Much more better!

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Post #: 38
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 15/6/2010 6:57:26 AM   
elab49


Posts: 54673
Joined: 1/10/2005
quote:

ORIGINAL: TheDudeAbides

EDIT: Miles, there is absolutely nothing sexual going on between me and Cagney. Me and Joel McCrea on the other hand... My countdown for him would consist solely of pictures



Dudeabides is a great title - are we females supposed to have pink and fluffy girly titles to help people who want to gender identify?

Anyway - not only are you female, you're apparently Maureen Stapleton

_____________________________

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 TheDudeAbides)
Post #: 39
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 15/6/2010 11:10:06 AM   
swordsandsandals


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

quote:

ORIGINAL: elab49

quote:

ORIGINAL: TheDudeAbides

EDIT: Miles, there is absolutely nothing sexual going on between me and Cagney. Me and Joel McCrea on the other hand... My countdown for him would consist solely of pictures



Dudeabides is a great title - are we females supposed to have pink and fluffy girly titles to help people who want to gender identify?



Just ask Fanboyslayer...

_____________________________

quote:

ORIGINAL: Rawlinson

Swords is right about everything.



quote:

ORIGINAL: Hood_Man

Swords smells like bum.



(in reply to elab49)
Post #: 40
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 15/6/2010 3:02:33 PM   
paul_ie86


Posts: 11422
Joined: 4/1/2007
From: Chelsea Hotel #2

quote:

ORIGINAL: elab49

quote:

ORIGINAL: TheDudeAbides

EDIT: Miles, there is absolutely nothing sexual going on between me and Cagney. Me and Joel McCrea on the other hand... My countdown for him would consist solely of pictures



Dudeabides is a great title - are we females supposed to have pink and fluffy girly titles to help people who want to gender identify?



Well now that you mention it....

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Post #: 41
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 15/6/2010 3:45:48 PM   
Miles Messervy 007


Posts: 6884
Joined: 11/2/2009
quote:

ORIGINAL: TheDudeAbides

EDIT: Miles, there is absolutely nothing sexual going on between me and Cagney. Me and Joel McCrea on the other hand... My countdown for him would consist solely of pictures

I can see that

_____________________________

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 elab49)
Post #: 42
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 15/6/2010 4:58:14 PM   
TheDudeAbides


Posts: 783
Joined: 15/1/2006
From: In the neighbourhood, feeling a bit daffy.
49) Oldrich Kaiser as Jan Machaty
Tmavomodrý svet (Dark Blue Wor
ld), 2001



Oldrich Kaiser adds effortless layers of cool to this otherwise rather hot-blooded melodrama concering a cohort of Czechoslovakian pilots who flee the Nazi occupation and join the RAF. Whilst the lead duo, Karel and Franta, bust up and make up over antics in the air and women on the ground, Kaiser's character Machaty tinkers with a piano in the corner and occasionally offers some world-weary advice.

Kaiser simply oozes Clark Gable-ish old school charm, looking entirely at home with a uniform, side parting and half-smoked cigarette hanging out of his mouth. But he doesn't simply coast along on an abundance of jaded charisma - these scenes are purposefully and effectively contrasted with the post-war Machaty, who languishes in a harsh Soviet work camp, a victim of the Communist Czech government's purge of Western 'sympathisers' -  which included those who had risked their lives fleeing to join the anti-Nazi forces. In these moments, we are permitted to see the deep weariness which generates his unshakeable self-possession.

Just as his character keeps things from blowing up among his comrades, so as an actor Kaiser helps the film run smoothly with his steadying and charming performance. His lovely rendition of the title song represents perfectly his contribution to the movie, being as it is utterly relaxed and yet instinctively sharp.


< Message edited by TheDudeAbides -- 15/6/2010 5:05:51 PM >


_____________________________

Reviews, film chat and the like at http://resilientlittlemuscle.blogspot.com

The Oxford Student - proud home of a film section somewhere between Siskel and Ebert: http://oxfordstudent.com/?cat=11

"Hammy is a stretch, I personally think he was just over zealous."
- IMDb reviewer on Dick Powell

"Good night, Papa. Machs gut."

(in reply to Miles Messervy 007)
Post #: 43
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 15/6/2010 5:04:10 PM   
rawlinson

 

Posts: 45002
Joined: 13/6/2008
From: Timbuktu. Chinese or Fictional.
Two unusual and unexpected choices in a row. I think I'm going to like this list.

(in reply to TheDudeAbides)
Post #: 44
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 15/6/2010 7:48:41 PM   
TheDudeAbides


Posts: 783
Joined: 15/1/2006
From: In the neighbourhood, feeling a bit daffy.
quote:

ORIGINAL: rawlinson

Two unusual and unexpected choices in a row. I think I'm going to like this list.


They aren't all so out there, but I'm glad you're on board with the weirder ones. I should have known you would be...


_____________________________

Reviews, film chat and the like at http://resilientlittlemuscle.blogspot.com

The Oxford Student - proud home of a film section somewhere between Siskel and Ebert: http://oxfordstudent.com/?cat=11

"Hammy is a stretch, I personally think he was just over zealous."
- IMDb reviewer on Dick Powell

"Good night, Papa. Machs gut."

(in reply to rawlinson)
Post #: 45
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 16/6/2010 9:37:29 PM   
TheDudeAbides


Posts: 783
Joined: 15/1/2006
From: In the neighbourhood, feeling a bit daffy.
48) Daniel Day-Lewis as Bill 'The Butcher' Cutting
Gangs of New York, 2002



Everyone knows that the real star of Scorsese's fascinating but infuriatingly uneven epic is Daniel Day-Lewis as the flamboyant, charismatic leader of an immigrant-hating New York street gang. Whilst the two other supposed 'leads' fumble about with silly-bugger accents and always try just a tad too hard, Day-Lewis lives and breathes 1860s New York right there in front of you. The weakness of his fellows is actually useful, as it makes his total dominance of the screen a fortuitous saving grace rather than an unplanned annoyance. In fact, the amount the films sags when he is off screen makes the blood turn cold at the thought of a Gangs of New York without him in it - it would have become one of cinema's favourite kinds of curio: the failed epic.

Watching him in There Will Be Blood and this, it strikes me that Day-Lewis is one of the few actors I've ever seen who really understands the phrase 'the past is another country'. Most actors playing historical roles try to make their characters relatable to a contemporary audience, emphasising their most modern traits and whitewashing over any historical reality that doesn't fit, and sometimes this works. With Shakespeare, for instance, it's almost impossible to do otherwise. But if you read up on your history, it quickly becomes obvious that people in the past did act differently and react differently to the extent that they must also have thought differently to how we think today, and Day-Lewis understands this and revels in it. To see his Bill the Butcher is to see all those bizarre, intiguing little small-print stories from old newspapers come to life and make perfect sense.

Day-Lewis's creation is one of the most compelling and memorable characters to appear on film this decade - flamboyant, unpredictable, violent and profound by turns, both a mutant product of his sick society and the king of it.

< Message edited by TheDudeAbides -- 16/6/2010 10:33:14 PM >


_____________________________

Reviews, film chat and the like at http://resilientlittlemuscle.blogspot.com

The Oxford Student - proud home of a film section somewhere between Siskel and Ebert: http://oxfordstudent.com/?cat=11

"Hammy is a stretch, I personally think he was just over zealous."
- IMDb reviewer on Dick Powell

"Good night, Papa. Machs gut."

(in reply to TheDudeAbides)
Post #: 46
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 20/6/2010 12:45:08 AM   
TheDudeAbides


Posts: 783
Joined: 15/1/2006
From: In the neighbourhood, feeling a bit daffy.
47) John Hillerman as Jonathan Quayle Higgins III
Magnum P.I, 1980-1988




Magnum P.I is about the most fun you can have from television. It's set in Hawaii. Tom Selleck wears as little clothing as possible. There are cars and guns and palm trees and fancy drinks. Occasionally, Magnum winks at the screen and your whole conception of the fourth-wall warps a little. Once there was an Iron Man contest. It had everything.

The show deserves especial praise for maintaining until the very end a sparkling humour, interesting mysteries and committed performances, none more so than Hillerman as the overseer of the swanky estate which Magnum is supposed to be protecting. A native Texan, he manges to adopt one of the most convincing English accents I've heard attempted to play the upper-crust war hero Higgins, and has even the bearing and carriage of such a figure tuned to perfection. Treading the line between brusque affability and exasperation, he creates the perfect foil/friend/nemisis to Selleck's nonchalant investigator. Hillerman is consistently the most restrained yet funniest of the main performers, and his Higgins never sinks into a lazy 'stuffy Brit' caricature, partly thanks to good writing and partly due to his knack for capturing the complex or surprising elements of the character. Also, extra credit for playing all three of his half-brothers, who just happened to be Texan, Irish and Hispanic respectively, with very sporting gusto and not as much camp as you'd expect.

My favourite thing is that whilst Selleck was the big draw, his feelings and emotions were really not that interesting compared to seeing him strut around solving mysteries and getting into (awesome) trouble. Even the famous 'Did You See The Sunrise?' ending, brilliant as it is, is still just Tom Selleck playing Magnum being vengeful. Hillerman, however, is much more powerful and really fantastic at communicating how difficult it is for a Higgins type to express any strong emotion, and so with his performance less is always more. A simple passing reference to, for instance, his time as a POW in Japan, ends up putting a lump in my throat simply because such stoicism rings true for the character and Hillerman hints very effectively at what lies beneath. And that depth is exactly what Magnum P.I relied on to keep it from floating off on its own flimsiness.

< Message edited by TheDudeAbides -- 20/6/2010 1:12:19 AM >


_____________________________

Reviews, film chat and the like at http://resilientlittlemuscle.blogspot.com

The Oxford Student - proud home of a film section somewhere between Siskel and Ebert: http://oxfordstudent.com/?cat=11

"Hammy is a stretch, I personally think he was just over zealous."
- IMDb reviewer on Dick Powell

"Good night, Papa. Machs gut."

(in reply to TheDudeAbides)
Post #: 47
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 20/6/2010 12:47:14 AM   
elab49


Posts: 54673
Joined: 1/10/2005
I always loved Higgins more. Then, I also loved William Daniels. I may have a type it seems

Great choice. They could have played him solely as a stick-in-the-mud figure of fun, but he was far more rounded than you'd have expected the character to be in a show at that time of that sort.

_____________________________

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 TheDudeAbides)
Post #: 48
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 21/6/2010 1:37:45 PM   
Lang


Posts: 1481
Joined: 15/8/2006
From: The Wall, Aberdeenshire
I'm looking forward to reading more from this list.

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Post #: 49
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 21/6/2010 1:58:04 PM   
Pigeon Army


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

ORIGINAL: TheDudeAbides





I didn't realise Michael Cera had a successful career in Czechoslovakia.


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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.

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Post #: 50
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 21/6/2010 2:36:21 PM   
TheDudeAbides


Posts: 783
Joined: 15/1/2006
From: In the neighbourhood, feeling a bit daffy.
quote:

ORIGINAL: Pigeon Army

quote:

ORIGINAL: TheDudeAbides





I didn't realise Michael Cera had a successful career in Czechoslovakia.



Haha, I know! He looks like such a wee babby, but he was actually 19 when it was filmed, the same as many of the real life pilots. Usually Dawson Casting prevents you actually seeing how young those people were


_____________________________

Reviews, film chat and the like at http://resilientlittlemuscle.blogspot.com

The Oxford Student - proud home of a film section somewhere between Siskel and Ebert: http://oxfordstudent.com/?cat=11

"Hammy is a stretch, I personally think he was just over zealous."
- IMDb reviewer on Dick Powell

"Good night, Papa. Machs gut."

(in reply to Pigeon Army)
Post #: 51
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 21/6/2010 7:07:51 PM   
Miles Messervy 007


Posts: 6884
Joined: 11/2/2009

quote:

ORIGINAL: TheDudeAbides

Haha, I know! He looks like such a wee babby
How did he get formed?

_____________________________

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 TheDudeAbides)
Post #: 52
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 23/6/2010 6:00:15 PM   
TheDudeAbides


Posts: 783
Joined: 15/1/2006
From: In the neighbourhood, feeling a bit daffy.
46) Donald Thompson as Donald Peters
The Quiet One, 1948




The New York Times's sublime Golden Era critic Bosley Crowther made the very observant judgement that this docu-drama about a disturbed inner-city child is very much an American take on the neo-realism movement, something I had never thought had caught on outside of Europe until I saw this now-forgotten mastepiece. Think the crushing familial neglect of Les Quatre Cent Coups with the inner turmoil of Germania, Anno Zero and you more or less have The Quiet One. Thompson plays a small boy who is abandoned by his father and offloaded by his mother onto a grandmother who despises his presence. He skips school and wanders the rough streets of New York until he is finally taken in by a residential school for troubled children, where he finally begins to open up to new counselor, Clarence. Thompson is breathtakingly natural as the boy, his expressive face registering both the heartache of his family's indifference and the tentative hope offered by the school with astonishing subtlety.

In some ways, it's a very un-American film - the ending is not an outright happy one, rather a nuanced and cautious note of hope, and Donald is not an easy character to understand. But his bizarre behaviour is in fact highly realistic and human - the scene where he violently smears a mirror with face cream after being left alone to mind the baby is a pitch-perfect reprensentation of the senseless, illogical nature of childish anger and frustration. And the sequence when he looks at the only photo of his family together and then repeatedly beats his own hand with a cord is one of the most powerful and unsettling moments from a child actor ever captured. Complex and instinctive, Thompson is heartbreaking and bewildering by turns as the disturbed victim of a traumatic childhood.

See The Quiet One for many reasons - its experimental compostion, its flirtation with New Wave-style editing, its fascinating New York street photography - but above all, see it for Donald Thompson's fierce, internalised performance.

< Message edited by TheDudeAbides -- 23/6/2010 6:01:12 PM >


_____________________________

Reviews, film chat and the like at http://resilientlittlemuscle.blogspot.com

The Oxford Student - proud home of a film section somewhere between Siskel and Ebert: http://oxfordstudent.com/?cat=11

"Hammy is a stretch, I personally think he was just over zealous."
- IMDb reviewer on Dick Powell

"Good night, Papa. Machs gut."

(in reply to Miles Messervy 007)
Post #: 53
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 23/6/2010 6:05:58 PM   
rawlinson

 

Posts: 45002
Joined: 13/6/2008
From: Timbuktu. Chinese or Fictional.
Good call! A really unexpected choice.

The film was up on Youtube and Internet Archive if anyone is looking for it.

(in reply to TheDudeAbides)
Post #: 54
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 24/6/2010 10:39:02 AM   
JIm R

 

Posts: 9185
Joined: 30/9/2005
From: Surrey
quote:

ORIGINAL: TheDudeAbides

47) John Hillerman as Jonathan Quayle Higgins III
Magnum P.I, 1980-1988




Magnum P.I is about the most fun you can have from television. It's set in Hawaii. Tom Selleck wears as little clothing as possible. There are cars and guns and palm trees and fancy drinks. Occasionally, Magnum winks at the screen and your whole conception of the fourth-wall warps a little. Once there was an Iron Man contest. It had everything.

The show deserves especial praise for maintaining until the very end a sparkling humour, interesting mysteries and committed performances, none more so than Hillerman as the overseer of the swanky estate which Magnum is supposed to be protecting. A native Texan, he manges to adopt one of the most convincing English accents I've heard attempted to play the upper-crust war hero Higgins, and has even the bearing and carriage of such a figure tuned to perfection. Treading the line between brusque affability and exasperation, he creates the perfect foil/friend/nemisis to Selleck's nonchalant investigator. Hillerman is consistently the most restrained yet funniest of the main performers, and his Higgins never sinks into a lazy 'stuffy Brit' caricature, partly thanks to good writing and partly due to his knack for capturing the complex or surprising elements of the character. Also, extra credit for playing all three of his half-brothers, who just happened to be Texan, Irish and Hispanic respectively, with very sporting gusto and not as much camp as you'd expect.

My favourite thing is that whilst Selleck was the big draw, his feelings and emotions were really not that interesting compared to seeing him strut around solving mysteries and getting into (awesome) trouble. Even the famous 'Did You See The Sunrise?' ending, brilliant as it is, is still just Tom Selleck playing Magnum being vengeful. Hillerman, however, is much more powerful and really fantastic at communicating how difficult it is for a Higgins type to express any strong emotion, and so with his performance less is always more. A simple passing reference to, for instance, his time as a POW in Japan, ends up putting a lump in my throat simply because such stoicism rings true for the character and Hillerman hints very effectively at what lies beneath. And that depth is exactly what Magnum P.I relied on to keep it from floating off on its own flimsiness.


Plus you had one of the best TV theme tunes ever written.... aaaah childhood

(in reply to TheDudeAbides)
Post #: 55
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 24/6/2010 11:26:45 AM   
Gram123

 

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

ORIGINAL: swordsandsandals
Some snippets from my Black Narcissus review:


The main problem is the completely ridiculous set design. Perhaps it is because I am a conditioned product of my era and I like everything to be either starkly real or glossy CGI, or perhaps its because I think that lush forests and obviously fake backdrops seem out of place next to the supposedly hostile territory that the nuns live in. It's such a fake, romanticised view of India, complete with colonial racism and the good old foreigner stereotypes that were around at the time that every shot seems to ring false. As I mentioned, I'm quite open to the fact that I couldn't get used to it because I've been spoilt, but really you can tell this is fake so badly that it's hugely off putting. Still, at least it provides a nice place for the Indian drummers to sit around playing drums with no apparent reason.
...
So in order to cover up the shoddy set design and painful acting, Powell and Pressburger decide that the only way to create any kind of tension is to have a completely overbearing score of dissonant strings so that we, the stupid audience, can be helpfully told things such as "EVERYTHING IS GOING WRONG” and "SHE'S GONE CRAZY!!” The orchestral score is a little like being smacked in the face with a violin. It's a complete waste of a brilliant musical instrument and it leaves you with a horrible headache. A bit like the rest of the film, really. Everything, from the tension to the romantic interest, just feels so forced and fake. It's not so much an assault on the senses as an assault on good taste, and it's not an experience I hope to repeat in near future. Or ever, for that matter.
...
A horrible concoction of terrible acting, terrible set design, terrible stereotypes and terrible music. Which makes for a terrible film. Still, it's redeemed (just) by some clever camera techniques and the fact that it came before a time when a sequel might've seemed like a good idea.

You're not alone in your assessment of Black Narcissus, swords.
I disagree with regard to the set design, probably as a result of watching Shaw Bros films and certain Japanese jidaigeki wherein obvious unreality of sets was pretty common.
But I'm on board with the rest of the points you make in your review. Here's my (very mini) review:

quote:

ORIGINAL: Gram123
Really don't get why this is so highly rated. I mean, yes it looks good, but some of the acting is pretty shocking (basically, Jean Simmons and all of the male characters). The plot's not exactly gripping, and I don't know what was going on with the race-rainbow of supposedly Indian natives.


_____________________________

Gram123's Top Songs Project

(in reply to JIm R)
Post #: 56
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 6/7/2010 6:44:02 PM   
TheDudeAbides


Posts: 783
Joined: 15/1/2006
From: In the neighbourhood, feeling a bit daffy.
Sorry for the lack of activity, but I've been in France sans Internet for a week. I'll try and post a few over the next couple of days to get back in the swing. So, without further etc. ...

45) David Burke as John H. Watson

The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, 1984-1985





First, a qualification - a not insignificant portion of the acclaim for this performance must go to the doggedly faithful scripts which underpinned the flawless Granada series. Although the series would largely go to pot (at least, compared to the first few years) by the end, the Adventures portion is by and large a perfect production. However, what made it especially memorable is undoubtedly the pairing of Brett and Burke, excelling both individually and as a symbiotic duo.

Moving away from the singularly irritating Nigel Bruce caricature which had dominated the public perception of Watson since the 1940s and returning to the stalwart man of action originally envisioned by Doyle, David Burke makes the Holmes purist's perfect Watson. It is performance of studied ordinariness, sensitively balanced to Brett's theatrical fireworks, yet by the end of the series Watson is as fully fleshed-out and nuanced as Holmes. For despite his solid, hearty normality, Burke never allows him to become bland or simply a sounding board for Holmes' theories. There is an underlying knowingness and humour to his Watson which makes him the perfect mediator between The Great Detective and the somewhat denser viewer. The character's boyishness is not clumsily mistranslated as childishness, as in many adaptations of the stories, but correctly conveyed as enthusiasm which makes him both easily excitable and occasionally vulnerable to disappointment at his self-perceived failures. This vulnerability is enhanced by intriguing details maintained from the original stories, such as Holmes keeping Watson's chequebook locked in his drawer, which subtly hint that Holmes is looking after Watson just as much as the other way round.

Brett and Burke understand these complexities and reflect them in their construction of the relationship between the two, which firmly insists on their equality. For the best display of Burke's well-judged lightness, see the first few episodes. Then, in the final episode, he makes brilliant use of the goodwill his performance has built up until now for a wrenching closing scene at the Reichenbach Falls which should bring a lump to the throat of any true bromantic.

< Message edited by TheDudeAbides -- 6/7/2010 6:49:07 PM >


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Post #: 57
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 11/7/2010 6:20:50 PM   
TheDudeAbides


Posts: 783
Joined: 15/1/2006
From: In the neighbourhood, feeling a bit daffy.
44) Sam Levene as Lt. Sam Lubinsky
The Killers, 1946




A throwaway role in a sporadically great noir that never quite maintains its initial momentum, Levene's dogged police lieutenant isn't really a part of great significance in The Killers. However, having watched it one and a half times (I need to stop putting movies on in bed because I never make it through them), he's the only aspect I remember clearly besides the dynamite pacing and shooting of the fantastic first half-hour. In a film full of lunkheads (Burt Lancaster), harlots (Ava Gardner) and straight-out bores (Edmond O'Brien, bless 'im), Levene is immensely likeable as the tough but good-natured copper Sam who is helping O'Brien's claims agent solve a murder.

Levene's part consists mainly of a long scene, mostly in flashback, as he narrates how he and Lancaster drifted apart as the latter began to sink into the seedy underworld. His wiry, no-nonsense New Yorkishness makes him instantly believable as a childhood pal of Lancaster's working-class palooka - caring about his fate, but not for one moment willing to compromise his integrity over him. The scene ends on a very nice moment as the story returns to the present day and we see that Sam is now married to Lily, the girl he had demonstrated an obvious crush on during the flashback sequence, and in that brief scene they quickly demonstrate a beautiful natural rapport. The moment he kisses the hand she has around his shoulder is one of those lovely, spine-tinglingly rare instances of what must surely have been a spontaneous, unscripted gesture on the actor's part. Little surprising things like that always knock me for six in classic films, and this one will always be how I remember the performance (and, unless I have a minor revelation, probably the film itself).



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Reviews, film chat and the like at http://resilientlittlemuscle.blogspot.com

The Oxford Student - proud home of a film section somewhere between Siskel and Ebert: http://oxfordstudent.com/?cat=11

"Hammy is a stretch, I personally think he was just over zealous."
- IMDb reviewer on Dick Powell

"Good night, Papa. Machs gut."

(in reply to TheDudeAbides)
Post #: 58
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 11/7/2010 9:57:35 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54673
Joined: 1/10/2005
That's a really interesting choice. If I was thinking Killers, personally I'd go for O'Brien but I can certainly see Levene making a strong impact. And I always liked the plain decency and integrity of Burke's Watson. A strong contender for my favourite.

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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.


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(in reply to TheDudeAbides)
Post #: 59
RE: 50 Favourite Film Performances (and some TV) - 11/7/2010 10:13:38 PM   
TheDudeAbides


Posts: 783
Joined: 15/1/2006
From: In the neighbourhood, feeling a bit daffy.
quote:

ORIGINAL: elab49

That's a really interesting choice. If I was thinking Killers, personally I'd go for O'Brien but I can certainly see Levene making a strong impact. And I always liked the plain decency and integrity of Burke's Watson. A strong contender for my favourite.


I think if I were going to pick an O'Brien role it would have to be The Barefoot Contessa. A weird but very impressive movie, and he really stands out amongst a fine cast.

Haha, the Burke-Hardwicke debate rages on in this household. One of my brothers won't even acknowledge that Burke was ever replaced


_____________________________

Reviews, film chat and the like at http://resilientlittlemuscle.blogspot.com

The Oxford Student - proud home of a film section somewhere between Siskel and Ebert: http://oxfordstudent.com/?cat=11

"Hammy is a stretch, I personally think he was just over zealous."
- IMDb reviewer on Dick Powell

"Good night, Papa. Machs gut."

(in reply to elab49)
Post #: 60
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