What DVD have you just watched?

Dwelling on his past glory as a prize-winning author, Ryota (Hiroshi Abe) wastes the money he makes as a private detective on gambling and can barely pay child support. After the death of his father, his aging mother (Kirin Kiki) and beautiful ex-wife (Yoko Make) seem to be moving on with their lives. Renewing contact with his initially distrusting family, Ryota struggles to take back control of his existence and to find a lasting place in the life of his young son (Taiyo Yoshizawa) - until a stormy summer night offers them a chance to truly bond again.

Highly recommended.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DwJcIoFuhto

tonym posted:

We really enjoyed this. The way different time streams for the individual stories are interwoven is very cleverly done, and good to see a modern war film that isn't dripping in gore. Very tense, made more so by the beating heart soundtrack. The 4K picture quality is truly astonishing and so is the 5.1 surround sound; not Atmos but wonderfully immersive nonetheless. Not overlong either.

Finally watched it at the weekend. Really good apart from the final Spitfire scene. I'm guessing that was meant to be symbolic rather than realistic? Surely no plane with a big lump of an engine up front could glide for that long? Looking forward to watching the extras video to see the production. The cinema photography was pretty stunning in places.

The Revenant:  Leonardo DiCaprio | Tom Hardy

A cinematic treat.  This movie was very effective in pulling me in as it didn't seem possible to simply watch it.  Right from the first moments and the first attack scene you felt like you were part of this.  I felt very uncomfortable and even guilty most of the time as I don't know how many times I ended up thinking how easy and comfortable my life is in comparison.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LoebZZ8K5N0

Florestan posted:

A cinematic treat.  This movie was very effective in pulling me in as it didn't seem possible to simply watch it.  Right from the first moments and the first attack scene you felt like you were part of this.  I felt very uncomfortable and even guilty most of the time as I don't know how many times I ended up thinking how easy and comfortable my life is in comparison.

 

Nice review Florestan. I felt the same way having seen this but once in the theater on its day of release. Much as I appreciated the movie, the level of chill, hardship and discomfort I felt throughout makes me realize I'll have to be in the right mind to watch it again. Probably alone, in the dark, and with absolutely no interruptions. The other cinematic experience that comes to mind for its level of intensity is "Black Hawk Down".

I recently watched "Man In The Wilderness" - the 1971 interpretation of Hugh Glass' plight starring Richard Harris. A different spin on the legend, but worth a watch and very well done for the real-time, all-analog cinematography of the day.

winkyincanada posted:
Haim Ronen posted:

What did you think of it, Haim?

Winky,

The landscapes and the shots of the birds are breath taking. It is supposed to be a documentary but they beautified it by making her the sole female eagle huntress which was not the real case and by paving a relatively easy way for her to reach her goal. It is definitely worth watching and you will enjoy it more if you don't have high expectations.

Haim Ronen posted:
winkyincanada posted:
Haim Ronen posted:

What did you think of it, Haim?

Winky,

The landscapes and the shots of the birds are breath taking. It is supposed to be a documentary but they beautified it by making her the sole female eagle huntress which was not the real case and by paving a relatively easy way for her to reach her goal. It is definitely worth watching and you will enjoy it more if you don't have high expectations.

I've already seen it and agree completely with your assessment. A slight pity that they dramatised the story in that way. It was a cool story in any case.

Have you seen The Cave of the Yellow Dog? I have spent some time in Mongolia, and some of the local people really rate that highly as an authentic representation of life in the countryside there.

winkyincanada posted:
Haim Ronen posted:
winkyincanada posted:
Haim Ronen posted:
 

Have you seen The Cave of the Yellow Dog? I have spent some time in Mongolia, and some of the local people really rate that highly as an authentic representation of life in the countryside there.

No, Winky, I haven't seen The Cave of the Yellow Dog and I added it to my Q. Thanks for the recommendation.

Fury (2014). Better than anticipated. The real hook for me was the contrasting persona of tank commander Brad Pitt, resolute on the battle field with his tank crew versus the civility he demonstrates when removed in the apartment with the two German women and newbie Norman. The grizzled veteran knows humanity, but ultimately the war demands no sympathy. A well-balanced production and thought provoking once you finish it.

joerand posted:

Fury (2014). Better than anticipated. The real hook for me was the contrasting persona of tank commander Brad Pitt, resolute on the battle field with his tank crew versus the civility he demonstrates when removed in the apartment with the two German women and newbie Norman. The grizzled veteran knows humanity, but ultimately the war demands no sympathy. A well-balanced production and thought provoking once you finish it.

I enjoyed most of this, Joe. The scene with the Tiger tank was particularly absorbing. But I felt the last chapter was more Hollywood than plausible war-movie.

I first saw this at the cinema and have now seen it again via 4K UHD.  I enjoyed it again and if anything the second time around I better appreciated the interaction between the three time-lines and how they ultimately converge.  The picture quality is of course excellent but the sound track is also very good (the exploding bombs spooked my dog). Recommended.

I missed this movie at the cinema so this 4KUHD disc was my first viewing. If, like me, you've followed the Alien trilogy much of the plot is rather predictable. Nonetheless I enjoyed the formulaic romp. Fassbender is excellent and dominates. That said, I think Prometheus is a better story with a wider range of interesting characters.   

Based/Influenced by Stanislav Lem’s The Futurological Congress.

I was a bit concerned I wouldn’t be able to get my head around the main actor changing from a real person to an animated character half way through. But, I was wrong, I found it engrossing and very enjoyable, Although I can understand why a lot of people wouldn’t.

MDS, yes I thought Mark Wahlberg, Kurt Russell and John Malkovich were especially good.  It is a movie I would not have even entertained watching had it not been for the element that this really happened.  So this was a Hollywood version of a documentary that has a Towering Inferno type ending.  Without knowing the real story I would say they did a pretty good job of attempting to tackle some key issues but in Hollywood a pretty good job still only means it might have been 50% realistic and 50% fudged?

I would describe the film as 10% (the beginning and very briefly at the end) trying to establish the family element behind the people who work in this industry (the main and secondary characters in the film).  45% then was to establish the work environment and politics on this rig and the remaining 45% was about the lead up to and the final explosion and the resulting deaths and injuries.  The end paid tribute by actually naming those who died.  I am glad they confined it to this and ended here without getting into the aftermath of the situation.  

For me the ending part with the explosion/fire part was a tad too long.  In my opinion, they could have expanded the central part of the film in which they could have further illustrated the conflict/politics of the oil industry combined with more facts and details of how a rig works and what went wrong (the part that interests me the most).  

For instance, it is clear that Schlumberger didn't complete the cement job which was a major contributing factor but the response from BP is that everything is OK (and we're 5 or 6 weeks behind and we're losing a pile a money).  Many have said that the John Malkovich character was made out to be overly villainous but from experience I would say he wasn't villainous enough.  One scene he behaved like the serpent in the garden who just manages to create enough doubt for the Transocean rig manager and that seemed to have been the turning point for the series of bad decisions.  I wish they would have included more details as to why the BOP failed.

The point of irony in the film comes as just prior to everything blowing up the head manager for Transocean goes to an event to receive a safety award.  The one detail that made me wonder was when the pressures were building they mention something about a 100psi rise in pressure and then there was a comment like this is enough to cut a car in half.  Maybe I mis-heard this or didn't understand fully but I think if it was written this way then the more technically minded among us would chuckle over this too.  As far as I know this rig would have been dealing with between 15,000 and 20,000psi.

All in all, throughout the movie there were little hints and jabs about issues that if developed could have turned this into a 20 hour mini-series so I understand that had to just settle for the hints and jabs for the most part and they stuck to a few bare essentials.  The key takeaway was that their are many good people who work in this industry and they are just trying to survive.  There are also many bad/corrupt people who just go along with the flow and wouldn't challenge things as making money (for the good of the huge corporations) is sometimes above the cost of human lives sacrificed occasionally. 

So, I found this interesting enough to see but I did have some connection to this world at one time in my life so that was more of the draw for me than anything else.  Hopefully, you can judge from this whether you might be interested in this film or not?

A nice idea rather spoiled by clunky execution. The two stars - both of whom I like - have oddly little chemistry. The direction is hackneyed, there are too many explosions, the writing is weak and there isn't enough exploration of the relationship between Ms Jolie and Pitt; nor the premise of the whole movie. Not bad fun though.

MDS posted:

Thanks, Florestan. An interesting write-up. Think I might give this film a viewing.

M

Yeah, I'd agree with Forestan (about this). The interplay between the people, the safety and financial trade-offs, and how they ultimately convinced each other it would be OK, is very well played out. Specifically, how they managed to construct a plausible case that the unusual readings had a safe explanation, and how the more obvious dangerous explanation was discredited rang very true. We tend to believe things that we want to be true.

Once things start to explode, it descends into pure hollywood nonsense, though. I stopped watching at that point.

Finally! A movie that uses music effectively, is filmed with a discerning eye, and leaves one hopelessly thinking about the layers and layers of depth regarding our human condition. Usually, having musical and visual perfection are enough to win me over but this one has a story too. This is a wonderful, interesting and challenging allegory that questions societal norms that far too often seem to be accepted mindlessly today.

Clearly though, if you view movies to be entertained then this one will be truly off-putting as it forces you to think. Or at least you will get the most out of it if you can look in the mirror and ask yourself some very challenging questions about yourself that you might otherwise avoid. In my opinion, director Yorgos Lanthimos is a genius. He has created something that on the surface may appear to be absurd but underneath contains mountains of depth as he probes the meaning behind the social constuct of couples as they set themselves apart from the world of the poor single souls. It is as if he is exposing the world’s views, which positions these two worlds as utopia versus dystopia. Yet he does very effectively show us that the rules for either are truly absurd.

Lanthimos does not make anything easy by supplying any answers and that is precisely why this film works for me. If you are smart enough to see it then he only starts the conversation for us. It is a film that keeps on giving as I think it calls for multiple viewings (to catch all the details) and an unlimited cause for an internal dialogue or never-ending discussions with the right person or groups. I think the casting is perfect as well too.

The other reason this works is that Lanthimos skilfully uses humour to juxtapose against a very sad and serious topic. But this is not cheap ha ha kind of humour. It is always indirect and very subtle. The characters are all very superficial beings without any apparent inner complexity that speak in monotone yet they all say exactly what they are thinking without showing any emotion. This is really how one should observe others in this world if you like to people watch and analyze others like I do.  One example of humour is in advice given to couples. At one point, the ‘guests’ are given advice, “that anyone who experiences difficulty (as a couple) that you can’t resolve yourself, you will be assigned children. That usually helps.”  If you have kids you will understand this.

The world created by Lanthimos is one where you cannot be single. If you are, you have 45 days to become a couple otherwise; you will be turned into an animal. And we all know that in the food chain what happens to animals. No matter which animal you pick there is always another animal bigger than you that will eventually kill or destroy you. To become a mate you must have something in common with each other. Examples in the movie range from being near-sighted, having constant nose bleeds, having a limp, having a lisp to having nice hair or taking pleasure in cruelty.

Without giving too much away I will say that I don’t think it was pure chance that Lanthimos chose Beethoven’s 2nd movement Adagio from the op. 18 no. 1 string quartet. Set in d-minor, it is the music that apparently was inspired by the tomb scene from Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet.   So yes, you may not see this until the end but this is a tragic love story in itself and by extension this applies in some unique way to each and every one of us. It is tragic if you don’t nor ever will understand what is the true meaning of love (living a lie or superficially) and it is tragic if you understand love at the level of Romeo and Juliet (would you take a bullet to save your partner or save yourself?).

So based on my top essentials for movies (music, visual, and a script that challenges me) I really liked this as it is a movie that made me think and I won't forget it.  This is rare in a world with a surplus of forgettable movies.  But specifically, had this movie not use the music it did I probably would not be so enamoured by it.  Music is a language I understand and the music perfectly translated into what you need to feel as a result of this movie.  Having said this I would also say that this is a movie that will divide.  There is no middle ground.  You will either hate this or find it to be intriguing and far from the norm (which is a good thing).  Tread carefully. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vU29VfayDMw

Baby Driver

Came with quite a bit of hype from the young adults in our family who had seen it.

I thought it was quite clever, especially with an emphasis on music and the way it was integrated into the story. Unnecessarily violent in parts though and too long (my usual complaints against most modern films).

Ray

El Cid

Watched this with my daughter and her husband, who happens to be Muslim.

I have always enjoyed this film as it avoids simplicity, although I believe that actual history is more complex. El Cid fought for both Christian AND Moorish rulers. Ben Yussef did not die at at the battle of Valencia (one of a number) but eventually took it. El Cid did not die at Valencia. So in this way the complexity was simplified, but the message that the (now) Spanish people were not split along simple religious lines apparently is true.

Good film, and an even better discussion with Imran afterwards.

M

The Fugitive

A film I haven't watched for a while, and one that holds up well. Looking at the plot it is interesting to think how it would work with modern CCTV and DNA evidence. Holds together MUCH better than Die Hard 2 of course (even ignoring the ridiculous action sequences).

M

MDS posted:
Time Bandits

Prompted by Kevin-W's post on the cinema thread about seeing Brazil, I thought I'd watch another Gilliam film.   

Watched this with my son-in-law as well, This is my favorite TG film.

The theme of allowing ourselves to become distracted by trinkets and rubbish, to the detriment of relationships, is profound; and being thoroughly entertaining always assists. Superb cast.

M

Add Reply

Likes (1)
Haim Ronen
×
×
×
×