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MOVIES: What Have You Seen Today? (2017)


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#391 Dustin

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Posted 19 April 2017 - 02:13 PM

Contratiempo/The Invisible Guest - director & script Oriol Paulo

 

A nifty little "locked room" mystery thriller used as frame for a nuanced psychological drama. An estimated € 4.000.000 budget bought you a film looking easily ten times as expensive*. A clever script, a solid cast with some fresh faces and thankfully not already-done-to-death locations here build that atmospheric density necessary to make the plot flow and the viewer ignore the holes. There are a few predictable moments, granted. But the end comes as much as a revelation to us as  it does to the main protagonist.  

 

 

*If you watch this please spare a thought for how Eon would approach the task, with plenty of action, stunts and genuine brand trash - but probably not that much more impressive for all their pains. If the estimated € 4.000.000 is a sound figure then they made it certainly look like more.    



#392 SecretAgentFan

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Posted 19 April 2017 - 03:57 PM

Sounds intriguing!  Thanks for the tip!



#393 DaveBond21

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Posted 04 May 2017 - 07:37 AM

The Fog (1980)

 

Directed by John Carpenter

 

Kind of a mix of The Omen, Halloween and Close Encounters. The plot is thin but it's more a series of chilling moments, and it's quite effective as that. It's like they came up with the eerie moments first, and then wondered how to put it together into a plot.

 

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#394 SecretAgentFan

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Posted 04 May 2017 - 07:57 AM

JACK REACHER: NEVER GO BACK

 

I liked the first Jack Reacher-film - and stayed away from this one due to the negative reviews and lack of opportunity to see this Edward Zwick-directed follow-up (it went out of theatres so quickly around my hometown).

 

But I have to say, having seen it now, I think this is a very well made action thriller, with Cruise nailing his version of Jack Reacher perfectly.  The plot propels itself forward quickly and leaves no dull space.  Cobie Smulders is great as a female soldier fighting for her reputation (and life).  

 

Yep - great entertainment.

 

 

NOCTURNAL ANIMALS

 

Wow, simply wonderful filmmaking, with a captivating story within a story, both very different from each other yet extremely important for each other.  Tom Ford is really a great director and writer.  This is the kind of arthouse film that keeps you on the edge of your seat.

 

 

BUNNY LAKE IS MISSING

 

Otto Preminger´s mystery about a child that disappears from a school is a 60´s masterpiece, now available in a pristine version on blu-ray.  Absolutely magnificent piece of work with twists and turns which really are a masterclass.  And Sir Laurence Olivier plays the police inspector with so much elegant precision that he does not need any big dramatic outbursts to shine here.  Look at the way he shows that he is in total command of the investigation with one little hand gesture.  Just terrific.

 

And the shocking revelation about "Bunny Lake"...  oh, man, that was a twist so many modern filmmakers would not be able to match.



#395 Professor Pi

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Posted 06 May 2017 - 05:03 AM

Guardians of the Galaxy, Volume 2

 

Pretty much everything you want in a Marvel Guardians movie.  The opening titles set the fun tone for the whole movie, though there is some emotional gravitas to it.  ELO never sounded better!  I rewatched the first Garudians movie before and felt it was like a Star Trek movie.  Star-Lord has Kirk's haircut, attitude toward women, but is learning his ethics.  Volume 2 is more like a Star Wars movie (I won't spoil the story with evidence of this, but the set pieces and plot devices will be recognized upon viewing.) 

 

The comic timing is sharper, the colors more vibrant, and the music just about perfect, both songs and score.  This has quite a cast (Michelle Yeoh has a blink-and-you-miss-it appearance as a Ravager.)  Each character is given more background, especially Yondu and Nebula.  Rocket and Drax are scene stealers.  In both movies, I'm amazed that Rocket has the most emotional resonance, given that he's a CGI critter.  They still have a villain problem, but this story is more about character development than galaxy saving.  Not sure if they intended this, but there's an interesting political metaphor employing "goldness" as an ideal perfection with a race known as the Sovereign.

 

Marvel seems to have bifurcated the MCU into the cosmic (Doctor Strange, Guardians, Thor), and the grounded (Ant Man, Civil War, Spiderman Homecoming)  It will be interesting to see the direction next year's Infinity War goes.  While I found Guardians 2 better than its first one, I'd probably rank it lower, ironically, on the overall MCU rankings.  It was everything I wanted and expected, but didn't have the jaw dropping paradigm shift of Winter Soldier or event status of The Avengers.  Still, it's a worthy sequel, better than the original, and admirably ties up loose ends from the first.  Not sure where they'll go for a third entry as this was a very satisfying sequel.

 

The last of the five (!) post credit scenes brilliantly ties in all the Stan Lee cameos (comic book fans will know, others should look it up.)  The genius of this is Marvel found a way to link Deadpool and X-Men movies into their universe without violating studio licensing agreements.  Basically, any movie with a Stan Lee cameo is now in the same universe!



#396 DaveBond21

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Posted 22 May 2017 - 06:01 AM

David Brent: Life on the Road (2016)

 

This was disappointing but that's not a surprise. I loved the original British TV series "The Office" but many have proved in the past that it's very difficult to translate a successful TV show into a successful movie.






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