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RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007

 
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RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 26/1/2013 8:32:41 PM   
rawlinson

 

Posts: 45002
Joined: 13/6/2008
From: Timbuktu. Chinese or Fictional.
63. The Beacon



by Daniel McGachey
Radio

Writing an "old-fashioned" ghost story is harder than it looks. It's far too easy to fall in love with some of the cliches that you fail to bring anything interesting to the genre. That's why the stories of Scottish ghost story writer Daniel McGachey are so special. Obviously influenced by classic writers like M.R. James (there's even a direct mention in The Beacon) his stories manage to feel authentically classic without coming across as too overpowered by the greats. His 2009 collection, They That Dwell in Dark Places, is unmissable and several of the stories from that book have been adapted by the Imagination Theatre audio broadcasts, this one in 2007. The Beacon is an entry in the haunted lighthouse sub-genre, a group of lighthouse keepers find themselves visited during a fierce storm by a woman seeking vengeance. Lighthouse horror stories always manage to give me a little shiver, it's both the isolation of the location and the fact that it's surrounded by the sea, something as treacherous as it is beautiful. The Beacon plays on the atmosphere of its setting perfectly, and while it might not quite scale the heights of Three Skeleton Key, it doesn't fall far short.

(in reply to rawlinson)
Post #: 31
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 27/1/2013 3:25:48 AM   
SadFace

 

Posts: 1816
Joined: 1/1/2008
From: Derbyshire / Leicester
Never heard of The Beacon - or the collection for that matter - but this sounds intriguing. I agree with what you say about stories (horror stories in particular) set in lighthouses.

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Tobias, you blowhard.

quote:

ORIGINAL: rawlinson

That's the most wrong I've ever seen someone be on this forum. And both Gimli and Elab post here.

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Post #: 32
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 27/1/2013 1:05:25 PM   
rawlinson

 

Posts: 45002
Joined: 13/6/2008
From: Timbuktu. Chinese or Fictional.
He's not really a big name writer, so it's no surprise that his stuff is a bit more obscure, but he's definitely worth checking out. The Kindle edition of the collection is actually under £2 on Amazon if you fancied giving it a go.

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Post #: 33
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 27/1/2013 1:06:53 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54597
Joined: 1/10/2005
Is Three Skeleton Key the one you mentioned in the radio thread? If so, do you know where it can be found? I've got the one Impqueen reviewed up to listen to at the moment. 

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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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Post #: 34
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 27/1/2013 1:12:04 PM   
rawlinson

 

Posts: 45002
Joined: 13/6/2008
From: Timbuktu. Chinese or Fictional.
http://archive.org/details/OTRR_Escape_Singles

There you go.

(in reply to elab49)
Post #: 35
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 27/1/2013 1:18:10 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54597
Joined: 1/10/2005
61



Kisaragi (Yuichi Sato, 2007, Japan)

On the first anniversary of her death Kisaragi Miki's biggest fans get together to reminisce and see the collection of her 'biggest' fan. But most all of them have a secret and rather than a wake the meeting turns into an investigaton into what was reported as a suicide.

Being a fan of someone like Miki might be a bit hard to understand for many people. It'd be a bit like following the career of a model you'd seen in a cheap magazine but in Japan (and other places) there are a plethora of fan mags and events and people can get a bit obsessed (a sub-set of the idol obsession). It's not like a Jordan thing but that might be the closest thing to it over here, but the fans tend to pretend there is no sleaze and the images worshipped tend to be a form of nubile innocence (so one story running through the film is the shock at the suggestion that Miki might have gone a step further to a nude photoshoot).

Given it's a film about 5 men in one small room over 100 minutes it does really well in timing the change ups and the drip of information with five well drawn characters. It manages the funny parts very well too and the initial appearance of Teruyuki Kagawa (having just watched him through Tokyo Sonata and Shokuzai) was highly amusing. Shun Oguri drops his cool persona pretty effectively as his confidence in being the best recieves a good kicking. 

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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 elab49)
Post #: 36
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 2/2/2013 12:56:40 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54597
Joined: 1/10/2005
60.



Crows Zero (Miike, Japan, 2007)
 
A manga adaptation which is a little reminiscent of Volcano High, Crows Zero is a fun ride as new arrival Genji tries to conquer Suzuran High School Ė something never before achieved. Helped by a yakuza who failed when he was there and by the seeming indifference of the current ruler of the roost, Serizawa (more focussed on his friendís illness). Genji works class by class towards his goal.

Miike made 4 films in 2007 (as well as apparently taking Zatoichi to the stage), something that clearly can hit the quality of what he produces, and Crows Zero is the only one to make this list mainly because itís consistently well-paced, performed and the fight scenes are well choreographed.

Itís not quite as good as Volcano High , mind. Also, 2nd film in a row for Shun Ogiri. Japanese film-making schedules seem to make it easier for actors to make multiple appearances in these kind of lists. Koji Yakusho managed 3 in my 2000 list and there's at least one other Japanese actor with two entries to come in this list.
 

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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 elab49)
Post #: 37
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 3/2/2013 8:39:37 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54597
Joined: 1/10/2005
59.



The Foreign Duck, The Native Duck and God in a Coin Locker (Nakamura, Japan, 2007)

I realise as a non-Dylan fan I should probably avoid in principle a film that refers to him as god but, sadly, I liked this film. It may move higher on further viewings, Nakamuraís work has done elsewhere, but, for the moment, it is sitting a modest distance down a list of films I like a lot. Itís placing may also reflect my slight confusion about where Joe Odagiri is as I was convinced he was in the film. I think it was the hair in the promo shots. 
 
In the gentlest way (torture and murder aside) Foreign Duck considers the Japanese attitude to outsiders and what people end up doing to fit in (even when youíre actually a native). Shiina moves to Sendai as a freshman, brought up nicely and dumped in a building full of strangers whose behaviour he doesnít really understand, while also working through his own desire for independence when problems arise at home.  Heís given conflicting viewpoints on the life of his neighbour Ė a Bhutanese exchange student who may have a tragic past Ė and caught up in the antics of his other neighbour, Kawasaki.
 
This reminds me of something of a halfway house between Fish Story and Golden Slumber in terms of storytelling Ė conflicting voices and flashbacks are used effectively and the performances work well with the tenor of the film.
 
Third Window has a talent for bringing the unusual and the little known to our screens from Japan. They seem to be in a few difficulties at the moment with all thatís been happening in the industry but Iíve got my fingers crossed that one of our most innovative imprints survives. Even the films I donít like as much are still interesting.



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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 elab49)
Post #: 38
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 3/2/2013 8:58:11 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54597
Joined: 1/10/2005
58




A Country Doctor/Man and Whale (Yamamura Koji, Japan, 2007)

Another slight cheat - sue me. But it seems reasonable enough to add Man and Whale when it's only a couple of minutes and really a Greenpeace promo. And also another Japanese film - there's a bit of a run of them at this bit of the list.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_XpvlrOcEcM

The main short is an adaptation of a Franz Kafka story of a useless doctor called out to a sick boy.  I've never been entirely sure what to make of this. In some ways it's utterly beguiling - the sing songness of the vocal going in and out with the movement of the animation. In others it creeps the hell out of me. In both it's unforgettable.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ozx1fzzuXdE

The second is far sweeter. A short short arguing that Japan owes whales for helping them survive in the worst times so now, when they can afford to eat other things, is the time to stop killing them.

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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 elab49)
Post #: 39
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 14/2/2013 10:15:46 AM   
elab49


Posts: 54597
Joined: 1/10/2005
57.



Live Free or Die Hard aka Die Hard 4 (Wiseman, US, 2007)

And?

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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 elab49)
Post #: 40
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 14/2/2013 10:28:48 AM   
Gimli The Dwarf


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Great choice!

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Fellow scientists, poindexters, geeks.

Yeah, Mr. White! Yeah, science!

Much more better!

(in reply to elab49)
Post #: 41
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 14/2/2013 10:34:35 AM   
matty_b


Posts: 14563
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From: Outpost 31 calling McMurtle.
Enemy. Of. Film.

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ORIGINAL: Cool Breeze
Mattyb is a shining example of what the perfect Empire Forum member is.


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Post #: 42
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 14/2/2013 10:42:09 AM   
elab49


Posts: 54597
Joined: 1/10/2005
Like the reminder of who you're agreeing with when you call me that? Hmmmm?

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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 matty_b)
Post #: 43
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 14/2/2013 10:44:50 AM   
matty_b


Posts: 14563
Joined: 19/10/2005
From: Outpost 31 calling McMurtle.
Oh shit.

CONFLICTED.

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Cool Breeze
Mattyb is a shining example of what the perfect Empire Forum member is.


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Post #: 44
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 14/2/2013 10:52:49 AM   
elab49


Posts: 54597
Joined: 1/10/2005


_____________________________

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 matty_b)
Post #: 45
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 14/2/2013 12:28:01 PM   
rawlinson

 

Posts: 45002
Joined: 13/6/2008
From: Timbuktu. Chinese or Fictional.
A Country Doctor is amazing, excellent choice, wonder what'll be nex...

oh.





What could possibly top Die Hard 4? Will we be seeing Spiderman 3? Transformers? Epic Movie? Maybe an appearance by Ghost Rider or TMNT.

You have now lost the right to mock anything I include on my list.

(in reply to elab49)
Post #: 46
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 15/2/2013 12:44:23 AM   
scarface666brooksy!!


Posts: 3544
Joined: 24/10/2007
From: The Valley of the Wind
Ooo a film I've seen! (the only other one I've seen thus far is Michael Clayton)

And it's Die Hard 4 It's alright, the most memorable thing for me with that film is watching it with my Mum and her blurting out "Gosh Silent Bob has gotten fat"

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RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 15/2/2013 12:50:24 AM   
MonsterCat


Posts: 7934
Joined: 24/3/2011
From: St. Albans, Hertfordshire
Die Hard 4 is fun.

"You killed a helicopter with a car!"

"I was out of bullets."

lolz

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Films watched in 2013

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Post #: 48
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 15/2/2013 9:34:45 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54597
Joined: 1/10/2005
My tweet from moments before was 'kill the helicopter, kill the helicopter, kill the helicopter'!

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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 MonsterCat)
Post #: 49
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 15/2/2013 11:05:01 PM   
ElephantBoy

 

Posts: 8612
Joined: 13/4/2006

quote:

ORIGINAL: elab49

My tweet from moments before was 'kill the helicopter, kill the helicopter, kill the helicopter'!

Rawls summd it up nicely, so I will only add that Die Hard 4 Pointless was rubbish

(in reply to elab49)
Post #: 50
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 20/2/2013 7:10:26 PM   
rawlinson

 

Posts: 45002
Joined: 13/6/2008
From: Timbuktu. Chinese or Fictional.
62. My Blueberry Nights



Film
Director: Wong Kar Wai

Somewhat unfairly criticised on its initial release, My Blueberry Nights has come to be seen as a rare WKW misfire. Truth is that it contains the same delights as much of his earlier work. Making her film debut, Norah Jones stars as Elizabeth, a woman troubled by the end of a relationship. She meets Jeremy (Jude Law) and becomes a regular in his small cafe, before beginning to drift her way across the country, maintaining contact with Jeremy by postcard. Like many foreign directors who make their way to America, WKW made a road movie. As usual, the outsider's view of a country reveals a world that resembles one that you might be familiar with, but that seems romanticised and somehow alien. He brings his usual concerns, that of the distances between each other, to the film, and leaves them play out in a series of vignettes featuring the people Elizabeth encounters on her travels. With excellent supporting turns from David Strathairn, Natalie Portman and Rachel Weisz, and a believable lead couple in Jones and Law,

(in reply to ElephantBoy)
Post #: 51
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 20/2/2013 7:13:52 PM   
elab49


Posts: 54597
Joined: 1/10/2005
I don't think the criticism was unfair tbh - and a major problem was, IMO, the casting of Jones.

Rumours about Grandmasters suggest it may not stand alone as a misfire, sadly.

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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 rawlinson)
Post #: 52
RE: Rawlinson & Elab's Top 65s of 2007 - 20/2/2013 7:19:47 PM   
rawlinson

 

Posts: 45002
Joined: 13/6/2008
From: Timbuktu. Chinese or Fictional.
A lot of the criticism I read attacked it for focusing on style over character development, which made me wonder if they'd also criticised Chungking Express for the same thing.

(in reply to elab49)
Post #: 53
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