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Raylenth

Films watched in 2020

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1 minute ago, Raylenth said:

Chappie.  An OK film, not much more to say really.

Chappie. Thought that was dog food! :lol:

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6 minutes ago, Peter Capaldi Fan said:

Chappie. Thought that was dog food! :lol:

It does sound a bit like a brand name.

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Just now, Raylenth said:

It does sound a bit like a brand name.

Fantastic 17,500th post.

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Just now, natedammit said:

Fantastic 17,500th post.

Oh yes, yay me and my informative, useful posts.

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5 hours ago, Raylenth said:

It does sound a bit like a brand name.

snapshotimagehandler_1739794192

:smile:

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A Miniature Schnauzer once chomped on my Chappie.

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It Chapter 2.  I know the reviews weren't as good for this as the first but I did enjoy it.  I've been a fan of King for a long time and It was always one of my favourite books.  It was always going to be hard to adapt it well but I think they did a good job on the whole, some of the CGI was a little lack luster but in the main scenes the effects were good.

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Posted (edited)

300- This is one of those films I've been meaning to watch for a while but just never got around to. I wish I'd seen it sooner. 

The biggest draw to this movie is the action scenes, and wow, Zack Snyder killed it with this one. I'm a Snyder fan, even enjoying his DC efforts. The editing and cinematography in this film is stunning. The excellent utilisation of chroma key superimposition gives this film such a unique visual quality. There are many shots in here which are going to be ingrained in my mind for a long time. 

Gerard Butler is brilliant as Leonidas. The rest of the cast are good, with Michael Fassbender and Lena Headey standing out. Although the film is visually beautiful, it suffers in the writing department. Everything around the Battle of Thermopylae is excellent, but the scenes at Sparta completely tank the pacing. Although the acting makes up fir it, the vast majority of the characters have very little depth to them, mainly serving as nameless cannon fodder during the action scenes. Despite this, I still had a great time watching the film, because once it retunes to the battles, it improves tenfold. The over-use of slow motion might be an issue for some, but I think it worked as it was always used to emphasise serious moments or actions. 

Xerxes' lack of development may be an issue for some, falling under the category of generic villains. I think it isn't an issue for this film, as the focus is on the Spartan's themselves and how they are willing to fight until the last man for what they believe in. Xerxes serves as the catalyst for their development, so I'll allow the film a pass for this one as he serves his role in the narrative well enough. 

Overall- 8/10.

If you like highly stylised action epics, this is the film for you. It was a blast to watch,  Zack Synder directed this one to the max. It is a visual feast, even if the dialogue doesn't always hold up. The cinematography on display makes up for it though for me.

Edited by The Friendly Dalek
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Posted (edited)
On 5/8/2020 at 11:59 AM, The Friendly Dalek said:

300- This is one of those films I've been meaning to watch for a while but just never got around to. I wish I'd seen it sooner. 

I like 300 too, its Snyder's best film after Dawn Of The Dead (2004). I was a bit disappointed by 300: Rise Of An Empire though as probably most people were. I never met Snyder but I saw him on set when I worked as an extra on Justice League in April 2016 for a few days at Leavesden. His daughter's death was a while after that. I was one of the Armies of Men in the big battle flashback scene.

I'm looking forward to Snyder's long-in-development-hell-but-finally-coming-soon Army Of The Dead with Dave Bautista. 

Edited by nicky
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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, nicky said:

I like 300 too, its Snyder's best film after Dawn Of The Dead (2004). I was a bit disappointed by 300: Rise Of An Empire though as probably most people were. I never met Snyder but I saw him on set when I worked as an extra on Justice League in April 2016 for a few days at Leavesden. His daughter's death was a while after that. I was one of the Armies of Men in the big battle flashback scene.

I'm looking forward to Snyder's long-in-development-hell-but-finally-coming-soon Army Of The Dead with Dave Bautista. 

Dawn Of The Dead is great. I probably won't bother with Rise Of An Empire, because I know it isn't going to live up to this one. 

That's cool that you were able to be an extra in Justice League. I've often thought about the idea of being an extra for something, just so I can say I've been in a film, but I can't find details on how to become an extra without paying for memberships and things to a site listing roles. I don't know anything about how people learn where a film is scheduled to shoot so they can turn up at the set and try that way. 

I've been looking forward to Army Of The Dead for a while, so hopefully Snyder delivers with that one. 

Edited by The Friendly Dalek

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Hannibal.  It's been a while since I've seen them but I noticed they are all on Netflix so decided a rewatch was in order.  The film has a strong cast with Julianne Moore doing a credible job in Jodie Fosters place, though in many respects the role of Clarice is rather less involved it feels in this film.  Though the ending of the film is very different to the novel it does feel better for it.  It's a good film and a worthy entry in the Hannibal visual stable.

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Posted (edited)
On 5/9/2020 at 10:30 PM, The Friendly Dalek said:

I've often thought about the idea of being an extra, just so I can say I've been in a film, but I can't find details on how to become an extra without paying for memberships and things to a site listing roles. I don't know anything about how people learn where a film is scheduled to shoot so they can turn up at the set and try that way. 

General rule of thumb for any talent (extra/model/actor etc) is to be VERY wary of any agency asking up-front for any kind of fees - the reason being more often than not, they're scams. Any  agency worth their salt will just take commission after your job is done AND/OR if they do ask for admin fees they will deduct them after your first job. Universal Extras is an agency that ask for a registration fee up-front despite being legit but they're quite strict/anal and well-known to be rude on the phone. 

Productions don't reveal publicly where they're due to shoot otherwise security will obviously be flooded by fans/media. I know you hear stories that fans have somehow managed to find out shooting locations but I think they must be leaks.

Production will generally recruit vetted extras (the industry term is 'supporting artists' or SA's) from dedicated agencies and the agency will put your profile/headshots forward and then the film's casting team will say either 'yes' or 'no'....BUT even if they say 'yes', a film's schedule and shoot dates and even their decision to hire you, will often change at the drop of a hat. In movie news you hear about "studio interference", script-rewrites and general indecisiveness and it affects everyone even extras. That's the worst part of the job; you do get messed around A LOT...mercilessly. And without remorse. It's a tough industry having to endure frequent job cancellations and lose-out on other jobs you turned down cos you said you were booked for another. You don't even get compensated if you lost out on another job, you're only little fish and they don't give a s***, all they care about is the success of their film.

You don't get to choose what shoot you wanna work on, you can ask the agency to put you forward for production to consider you, but that's it - production won't hire you just cos your keen, they'll hire you cos they want your look...even if you're just in the background because they're very meticulous about detail and authenticity.

Edited by nicky
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Red Dragon

Another film that its been a while since I've seen it, it'll be 20 years old next year.  Gosh.  The opening scenes show something I'd forgotten, and this part was set in the 80's but still, Anthony Hopkins and thus Hannibal Lecter, with a ponytail.  Poor Hannibal, just no.  I have no problem with men with them, it just really doesn't suit the character!

It's still a good film and always good to watch.

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Hidden Figures - Continuing on my mission to watch films I haven't seen before. I admit I know next to nothing about the early endeavours of manned space flights so this film was a revelation. It was well written and extremely well acted demonstrating that the space pioneers were not just the people in the rockets. A fantastic film that I could happily watch again. 

10/10

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15 hours ago, Peter Capaldi Fan said:

Hidden Figures - Continuing on my mission to watch films I haven't seen before. I admit I know next to nothing about the early endeavours of manned space flights so this film was a revelation. It was well written and extremely well acted demonstrating that the space pioneers were not just the people in the rockets. A fantastic film that I could happily watch again. 

10/10

I know you aren't specifically watching early space flight films but you would probably like First Man as well.

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9 hours ago, Raylenth said:

I know you aren't specifically watching early space flight films but you would probably like First Man as well.

Thanks. I have seen First Man which I really enjoyed. That's why Hidden Figures worked so well as it was essentially the same story but from the viewpoint of the female African American mathematicians. 

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26 minutes ago, Peter Capaldi Fan said:

Thanks. I have seen First Man which I really enjoyed. That's why Hidden Figures worked so well as it was essentially the same story but from the viewpoint of the female African American mathematicians. 

And the real hero of the story, Kevin Costner.

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14 hours ago, natedammit said:

And the real hero of the story, Kevin Costner.

I was more distracted by the fact Sheldon was in it. 

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Posted (edited)

220px-Mid90s_(2018_movie_poster).png


MID90s (2018)

3.5/5 (No spoilers)

I quite liked Jonah Hill's directorial debut. It was a charming, multi-layered film dealing with a variety of themes such as loneliness, acceptance and loss of innocence. Despite not having much of a plot, the characters and situations were very believable (apart from the girl and the ending*) which was what kept me engaged and made-up for the lack of story.

MID90s is the film I was expecting when I first saw Larry Clark's KIDS (1995); in Clark's film the boys just happened to be skateboarders (Clark's attempt to be 'trendy'?) but it had no bearing on the plot whatsoever whereas MID90s highlights the skateboarding as an important part of the kids lives. There's also a nice balance throughout the film where we see the main character bounce between his less-than-ideal family-life to the one with his controversial new-found friends - it's this parallel within the narrative that poses an interesting question about where a lonely boy feels more welcome. I didn't like the ending though, it was too sudden and didn't really resolve anything - but its hard to have a good ending when you have no plot. If it wasn't for that ending I'd have given a higher score. 

I'm not sure why Hill chose to shoot it in 1:33:1 aspect ratio though instead of standard 1:85:1 widescreen, that was a controversial decision and it felt like it was some kind of pretentious artistic statement/gimmick (if it was then why not just make the film black & white?). Maybe 1:33:1 was meant to be reminiscent of the 90s... but that doesn't make sense since widescreen movies have been around for decades in cinemas. Still at least it's better than BOYHOOD (2016).

*SPOILER* 
I didn't buy a girl her age would wanna fool around with  a much younger 13 yr old boy. And the ending; WHO edits camcorder footage onto another CAMCORDER TAPE?! You would edit the camcorder footage onto a VHS master-copy cassette. Then you could bring that cassette to the hospital and play it in the video player in the room! WTF!?

Edited by nicky

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Posted (edited)

220px-Overlord2018Poster.jpg

OVERLORD (2018)

2.5/5 (No spoilers)

I like the idea of Nazi zombies, its an interesting combination of two evils; one based on real-life and the other on fantasy while simultaneously making an interesting alternate take on history. OVERLORD has a bigger budget than most undead Nazi films but it was actually pretty disappointing. It makes me question now whether seeing JJ Abrams name on a poster is actually a good thing these days.

The plot was quite underwhelming, the characters a bit shallow and most importantly there just wasn't enough zombie action..or enough zombies at all. Its a wonder where the budget went, certainly not to zombie effects. Its a pretty slow start and a good while before the first zombie even appears and up until that point we have to settle for what is essentially a 2nd rate standard WW2 movie who's only saving grace is the typical, "distract the SS officer while people hide" scene. 

There was also something unlikable and forced about Wyatt Russell (son of Kurt) as the corporal leading the troops; maybe it was him trying to be like his dad but whatever it was, it just wasn't working. Some plot-points and characters were left in mid-air too and new characters just seemed to just pop-up out of nowhere with very little introduction. Not enough was told about the zombie experiments and even the scientists did nothing to reveal more in the film. If you're gonna make a movie about an engineered zombie army then SHOW US THE ZOMBIES and include the HOW and the WHY behind the experiments. 

Its a fairly crapily written film that misses opportunities to shed light on certain areas and the zombie aspect just seemed to be in the sidelines and not the forefront. Its a disjointed film where the writer made some odd decisions on behalf of the characters to get the story moving from A to B. DEAD SNOW (2009) was better.

Edited by nicky
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Posted (edited)

I was really looking forward to Overlord, but like you I was a bit disappointed by it.

Edited by Bumper8
Grammar correction
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Posted (edited)
11 hours ago, Bumper8 said:

I was really looking forward to Overlord, but like you I was a bit disappointed by it.

SPOILERS:

Yeah, it was dumb that the French girl called up to the woman in the window (for no reason) only for the woman to then dob her in to the Nazis for being out past curfew. Why didnt the French girl just stay put while the squad checked the house as instructed?

Nothing came of the French girl's zombie aunt. Why was she even there and not held captive like the other zombies? Pointless having her at all.

The American soldier that the was rescued from the lab was not given enough introduction. He just popped-up midway into the story and all we're told is he was captured when he parachuted in. He added nothing to the story and just served as an extra man on the squad.

The hero stupidly injects his dead squad-mate with the serum DESPITE having witnessed the horrors of the lab. Did he really expect him to be normal afterwards?!

I can count the total number of zombies featured on-screen on one hand.

Edited by nicky

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Posted (edited)

220px-Da_5_Bloods_poster.jpeg

DA 5 BLOODS (2020)

3.5/5 (No spoilers)

Spike Lee turns what might have been an interesting post-war action-drama into a quasi political message about brotherhood and the Black struggle (as always with Lee's films). Personally, I'd much rather have seen Oliver Stone direct this but that's not to say DA 5 BLOODS is a disappointing film, its just if a film is about Vietnam vets returning to 'Nam in search of hidden gold then I would prefer it to have more focus on post-war tensions instead of a pro-Black message. 

Actually, the political/Black angle of the film doesn't really feature that much, it feels more like a sub-plot but Lee dresses it up in a way that makes you think its more prominent than it really is. The film is also pretty long and the slow start doesn't really help which is kinda inexcusable really since most of The Bloods themselves are quite under-developed. Delroy Lindo is the only fleshed-out character and the only one to perform a monologue right into the camera like in earlier Lee films like DO THE RIGHT THING (1989). However, Lindo's monologue adds nothing to the film and comes so randomly almost 2hrs into the film - it just feels awkward.

Lee also shoots sometimes like a documentary and seems to want to educate his audience by using archive footage and flashing up pics of famous Black historical figures whenever someone mentions their name which becomes quite patronizing and unnecessary - we know who Aretha Franklin is, (and even if we don't) do we really need a pic of her to suddenly flash on-screen? The music/songs in the film was used quite inappropriately too in scenes which really didn't need it. 

I found the film entertaining as a 'search for hidden gold' adventure but couldn't help but feel more should have been said about the post-war tensions like Oliver Stone or RAMBO films. Having said that, this film was better than THREE KINGS (1999).

Edited by nicky

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Crawl.  Completely uncomplicated plot wise, it was both a bit better than I expected and at the same time just as bad as I thought it was going to be.  It was a fairly standard 'monster' movie, but at least they didn't make the mistake of trying to make the alligators super big/vicious/evil or anything and their presence was easily explained by them nesting there.

The stupid bits of the film were all to do with standard movie tropes where the human element experiences some pretty severe traumas but magically soldiers on.  I mean how many times can you be bitten by a croc and be relatively unaffected?  I know her wounds were luckily all fairy superficial but come on!  She was bitten 3/4 times and death rolled and you can't tell me that the fact that she's a competitive swimmer, and therefore used to underwater twists (when you flip to swim the next length) somehow makes her suddenly able to remain calm and lucid after being tumbled multiple times and without any tear/ligament issues from said death roll.  The less said about Daddy surviving having his arm ripped off without immediately going into standard or hypovolemic shock the better, and that's on top of him having a compound fracture which is bad enough in normal circumstances, and probably ultimately fatal when you factor in that he's been crawling round a basement that's got rotting animal corpses, rats and their poo and urine, mud, microbes and dirty flood water.

It's not the worse monster/disaster film ever, it's certainly watchable, but it's annoying for the usual reasons.

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Einstein and Eddington- Thought it was quite a good film. Hadn't seen it before but it was thoroughly enjoyable to watch.

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