Nah, I’ve seen the movie 100 times. He escapes. Got it?
There are some people who think Mr. Pink might also have been a cop/ informant. I’m not certain I agree, but I appreciate the fan theories. Some people think he says “Don’t Shoot, I’ve got the stuff!” instead of “Don’t Shoot, I’ve been shot!”
As neither line is in the script, it’s hard to know for certain.
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri. Another good one, don’t want to spoil anything but I really liked it.
Well, just saw Justice League yesterday.
I can’t really claim to be disappointed since I had my expectations in check, but I did want more out of this than what I got. A part of this is surely just that the groundwork hadn’t been layed properly.
There really should’ve been standalone Aquaman, Cyborg and Flash movies before this. With the former two, there’s so much backstory that is just glossed over in a couple of sentences, and having these characters and their respective worlds fleshed out would’ve helped immensely. (Atlantis sequence is underwhelming, contains references to events we haven’t seen yet, and Amber Heard’s Mera is presented as if we’re supposed to know who she is and what her significance is).
I also didn’t like the portrayal of the Flash in this. Ezra Miller hams up his reactions a lot (and Flash seems to mostly just be doing reactions). He’s basically just there for comic relief. .
Danny Elfman’s score is confusing. He reuses old themes from other continuities (his own Batman '89 theme, as well as the Williams Superman theme) which seems like a big mistake no matter how much I love said themes.
Action was entertaining enough I suppose, and Ben Affleck’s Batman continues to be the best part of this universe (not just the performance, but the way Batman moves and looks as well). When watching an early Gotham sequence I couldn’t help but think that I’d rather just stay in Gotham and follow a Batman adventure.
That being said the same sequence contained a moment that made me go “What?” Batman catches a burglar, uses him as bait for a Parademon, and then just lets him go when it’s over? I thought Batman caught criminals?
The film in general contains a good few of these eyebrow raising moments.
I found Jason Momoa’s Aquaman entertaining, but at the same time he did came off as a “surfer dude” or something like that, which. doesn’t really feel like Aquaman to me
In the end I almost always get something out of going to these types of films, because they’re based on characters I like/love, and as long as the portrayal is somewhat faithful I just like seeing these characters up on the big screen, but really I didn’t think this was particularly good. It was OK.
I’m kinda tired of all these Superhero movies. Marvel is enough, I’m sick of people trying to launch their own “cinematic universes”. There was the Mummy, Ghostbusters, DC goes in, everyone wants to capitalize on Marvel’s success. They don’t want to make good movies anymore, just set-ups to sequels and universes. It’s daunting. I’m fed up with Marvel but I thank them for one thing - Ant-Man. I love this movie, I could watch it again and again, it’s very heartfelt, small-scale, personal and most of all - funny! None of these bloated Iron Man, Avengers, Cap America or Guardians movies provided me with amount of fun that Ant-Man has. Although I gotta give it to Guardians for the great songs used.
As for the topic… Few days ago I re-watched Trainspotting and proceeded to watching Trainspotting 2. I loved it, it was a sequel that had no right to exist nor work, yet it does exist and works very well. To anyone interested that liked the first movie - watch the sequel! It’s totally worth it!
Watched MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS
Film contains all the elements that come with the Kenneth Branagh Seal of Quality. You get a strong cast, strong performances, good pacing. There is a somewhat new veneer of artistic imagery going on here though which I didn’t totally expect from Branagh.
The film is made to look a bit like a fantasy film and will remind people a bit of films like THE GOLDEN COMPASS, HUGO, or even the animated film THE POLAR EXPRESS.
The mystery was pretty satisfying and Branagh does a great job breathing energy into his portrayal of Agatha Christie detective hero Hercule Poirot. It is through him the movie moves.
But Branagh’s Poirot is far from the only occupant of this painterly 1930’s world. An ensemble cast that extends across lead and secondary roles imbues many characters with a hero or heroine like quality that it feels like each one can star in their own movie.
It was a joy to watch them all.
There are a number of changes and embelishments I understand between this 2017 film adaptation and the original novel, but they are all changes I approve of.
Particularly there are big changes to the start and to the end of the story that I feel are actually superior to the original book.
A word of warning though to realism nerds. The mystery does not actually play fair. Out of twelve possible murder suspects, key revelations for a good number of them occur in a single scene late in the second half just as Poirot is about to make a momentous accusation.
No one in the film has a fighting chance of staying ahead of Poirot, and that includes the rest of us. There’s better chances of us figuring out how many hairs are in Poirot’s magnificent moustache rather than properly discerning the mystery from the evidence given to us.
However, as a murder mystery drama - rather than a fully realistic murder mystery - it totally works. One feels the fantasy-like imagery was meant to ease our minds into seeing this world as not quite like our own and if that was the intent, then this film succeeds wonderfully.
I felt a positive energy throughout this film. Like everyone on it had a great time, so I expect very interesting featurettes and I wait with expectation for a special edition BluRay of this film early next year.
The 1974 film version by Sidney Lumet is far superior, and Albert Finney does a better Poirot. Definitely worth checking out.
Branagh’s adaptation underutilised his supporting cast, focusing more on the artificial aesthetics of the environment, which ultimately feel artificial and contrived.
Like I said… I felt that the unrealistic and contrived settings were to support the unrealistic and contrived Mystery Drama.
In the end it worked for me because of the insight on the human condition rather than the logic of the case.
The contrivances even come down to the fact that if you did take the Orient Express to the Brod stop as Branagh’s Poirot did in the film you wouldn’t encounter a single mountain at all, yet mountains figure prominently in the 2017 film!
Me and a bunch of friends have started catching theatre showings of classic 80s films. Last month it was Raiders of the Lost Ark, and… well, it’s the 30th year anniversary of Predator this year, so there was a showing of it at a theatre in Stockholm yesterday.
It was a great audience, cheering and clapping at all of the classic moments (“Dillon! You son of a bitch!”, and “Get to da choppah!” among others).
While I’ve seen it many many times over the years, I am glad to have caught it in the theater (was way too young first time around).
It is both surprisingly well put together (very well show/framed) and a time capsule from the 80s with the way the action goes.
Only real problem I noticed is the guerilla camp attack scene is way too long and drowned in explosions.
Okay, I just watched the movie called Sticky Notes, starring Rose Leslie and Ray Liotta.
Story is amazing, writing is just top-notch. I highly recommend it. It was on HBO2, and I was just “Oh Game of Thrones actress and GTA Vice City’ Tommy, why the hell not?”
behind the scenes stories about how PREDATOR came together are also quite interesting.
For example… the monster was supposed to look like this:
So the journey from that time… to when we finally got the final version of the film, the monster, the merc roster… all amazing.
In regards to Justice League
Read this a few days back. Kinda interesting. Doesn’t look like Snyder’s version will ever see the light of day but imo, they would absolutely make a KILLING off disc sales if they included Snyder’s rough cut in “bonus material”. Of course, that could backfire and have fans in an uproar if they liked what Snyder had tried to do.
One excerpt on Snyder’s version:
The scenes are all in the right order; It has a beginning, middle, and end; It has SOME effects and music; So, if you felt so inclined, you could sit down and watch it. But that doesn’t mean it’s done.
Warner Bros won’t foot the bill for any of that [post-production, more visual effects work]
Just got back from Star Wars: The Last Jedi.
It was enjoyable but disappointing. You could easily cut out 30-40 minutes without it hurting the film Finn’s storyline basically goes nowhere, there is artificial drama, where characters act a certain way onlyto create conflict Laura Dern’s general and Poe Dameron, the death of Supreme Leader Snoke is anti-climactic and comes way too early, and there’s some really odd inter cutting where it willl cut from some action to something else, then when it cuts back five minutes later the action resumes at the exact same place it was left.
Still, there’s a few great set pieces and visuals, great visual design and John Williams returns to score the film…I’m definitely in the theatre for episode nine.
The Disaster Artist. Really funny. James Franco is a perfect Tommy Wiseau.
Actually all 3 star yen. Your thinking of the final fight which was different.
When I made this post the third one with Yen hadn’t been made yet.
Not sure if there’s a thread just for this movie, but I saw The Last Jedi today.
As someone who thought The Force Awakens was a disappointing remake, this latest one was a pretty good Star Wars movie, though a little long. It looks stunning and tries to do new things, while also continuing the story arcs of the original-trilogy characters (I thought successfully). There were about five out-of-place Marvel jokes, and the movie would have been better off without them, but they’re easy enough to ignore. Some of the cute animals were probably created with the intent of them becoming plushies.
All in all, it won me back, though even if the next one is great, there’s no way I’ll consider the new trilogy a success due to the creatively bankrupt first movie.
Saw STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI
This movie is very far from what a conventional Star Wars film is. In fact, it is quite far from what a conventional adventure film is.
The film’s first half seems predictable enough, but as soon as the second half starts, everything is thrown for a loop one item at a time. People wanting that sense of uncertainty will find plenty to like.
Those looking for a reassuring “middle of trilogy” experience will be unsettled, or even disappointed.
But either opinion would include the phrase: “but it’s really a blast to sit through”
I think, outside of the Bioware video games, we’ve grown accustomed to Star Wars stories where all the main decisions seem predictable or pre-written in stone. That is far from the case here, and the film’s creators know this, thoughtfully breaking down the progress of the plot in smaller encounters and quest lines, all designed so that we can get a series of mini-surprises and twists.
So on the bright side, there’s lots of experimentation going on. The downside is it can feel a lot like you’re watching a Pro-Wrestling storyline - Will these two characters really shake hands? Or will one guy kick the other in the tummy as soon as their hands touch? Characters sometimes literally emerge out of gates, shrouded in smoke and drama, and you’re wondering “What is he gonna do?” You’re bracing for a chair shot… or wondering if there’s another guy behind this guy about to smack him with a chair.
It’s that kind of movie really, but that’s not to say there’s no main threads going on.
WARNING: SPOILERS BELOW!!
The most major, universal plot thread involves the juxtaposition of Youthful Intelligence (because today’s kids are really smart) versus Aged Wisdom. Both, whether real or imagined (Some smart young people turn out to be not so smart, and some old people trying to be wise turn out to be not so wise), come into conflict almost immediately and are at the fulcrums of all the main plot milestones. The pairs of young and old matched against each other throughout the film on both sides of the galactic war are interesting, and their arguments make for compelling viewing.
Whether it’s Snokes vs Kylo Ren, Rey vs Luke, Luke vs Yoda, Poe vs Leia, Poe vs the Vice Admiral, Finn vs the Codebreaker… You get a sense that the film is not just about the struggle of the First Order and the Rebellion, it also seems to be the struggle of old people trying to keep young people down (or trying to enlighten or corrupt them), and young people trying to assert themselves into the world to find their place (and accepting or rejecting presented enllightenment or corruption).
The latter interplay is what gives THE LAST JEDI its best qualities. Given the film’s plot is already configured much like a Bioware video game with quest lines that allow various player characters to make the best (and difficult) choices for themselves - gamers can almost imagine when the infamous Bioware Decision Wheels should appear - the film actually results in multiple characters developing forward and having earned most of their catharsis.
The result, however, is that some long plot arcs can feel pointless. “Quest Failures” happen because they can happen, and yet do not result in conventional plot pay offs or bail outs which, as I mentioned above, will either feel refreshing or make you feel a bit put-off that so much time was spent on a threadline that was never going to work out anyway.
Also, unlike in an actual video game where you can invest hours, days, or multiple sessions in building your character’s motivations and development towards a key critical decision, instead, we have multiple characters making monumental decisions within the space of 120 minutes. Granted, it’s the second runaround for most of them. Still, it can feel a bit abrupt.
But those looking for a character-focused Star Wars will not be disappointed. Notable also is how the characters for this middle episode of the third trilogy seem to acknowledge things that audiences may have once presumed to be contrivances or as things meant to subvert below the radar of audience intelligence. This is most apparent when Snokes scolds Kylo Ren, pointing out that on Starkiller base he was bested by a waif girl who had never held a lightsaber before.
Another sub-plot I found interesting, which is then promoted into the main plot - and will only now be resolved in Episode 9 - is the concept of Nihilism as the new Evil. The surviving villains (read: The Real Bad Guys) do not rally around the conventional banner, but, they form under one’s desire to tear up every form book because there seems to be no happiness possible with any of the options presented.
Note that in various conventional plots, and definitely in real life, a Nihilistic “eraser” mentality has been key at times to try and effect change, or to … well… rebel… against evil status quo elements. However, what happens in this film, and this is primarily possible because of the chosen character-above-all structure, is that characters that seek erasing all things as their own goals transmogrify into a kind of misunderstood evil that can be more destructive than the lawful and logical forms of evil that we have come to expect from STAR WARS and other similar adventure stories.
As noted by one of the so-called “wisened” characters: “Good guys? Bad guys? Fighting for your freedom? If you want to really life free? Here’s my advice: Don’t join either.”
THE LAST JEDI is not a perfect film, but after films like THE DARK KNIGHT RISES and other hero and adventure films played with terrible choices and events only to pull themselves back to safety, there is something to be said for a film that isn’t cowed into pulling its punches and is willing to leave things in a perplexed state. It does this even if it means that plot or smooth event transitions are discarded in favor of characters just doing what they can do because it’s listed on their character sheet. Leia, for example, is suddenly able to use Force Powers without any self-contained reference to them in the narrative, and characters like the Vice Admiral choose not to tell anybody about her plan to lead the fleet to an old Resistance base just because she is roleplaying a certain kind of mysterious character and acting up a “she might be a traitor” card.
The biggest character-flip-out of all though is Kylo Ren choosing a moment to just do away with Supreme Leader Snokes. People who are familiar with Bioware games know that this Sith Apprentice Backstab gag is something Bioware basically owns as a Star Wars plot device to the point that it’s considered now some kind of Sith tradition even if in reality it doesn’t seem like this was intended by George Lucas. But it’s not so much as the event itself, but rather the execution. There is some dramatic build up to this moment, but for the most part, it happens only because Kylo has basically given in to his anger at being made an idiot by Snokes, at that moment, because it fits his character and because he can at that exact time.
There is also this huge deal about Failure that runs through the whole film: Rey’s parents? Failures. Kylo Ren as an apprentice? Failure. Poe and Finn’s attempts at space swashbuckling? Dangerous Failure. Snokes as a master who can keep his apprentice in line? Fatal Failure. The history of the Jedi according to Luke? “A history of Failure.” It’s a film where characters are constantly picking up the pieces and it plays out as if they are all making it up as they go along and gives the film its uneven and unsettling character.
Director Rian Johnson also manages to pull off all these things with a surprisingly high amount of interjected humor. Almost everybody in the film has some kind of punchline or off-kilter moment (which again, makes it feel like there’s multiple Bioware Game Hero sessions running at once). But all said, you do eventually get to a kind of skewed unconventional end game setup.
It is in this ending state that Rian Johnson can say he has accomplished his mission. He has created a kind of middle episode ending that will now necessitate a third and final story.
The pressure on JJ Abrams, who will direct Episode 9, won’t necessarily be to outdo THE LAST JEDI. The truth is, the film is not of the highest exemplary quality due to the jarring quality of elegant storytelling subverted to characters just playing themsleves out. But the pressure will be on whether he should dovetail the threads from this film back into that conventional story and plot style that is the staple of STAR WARS (and of which JJ is already a proven master). Or if he must build upon the kind of uncertain energy that THE LAST JEDI introduces.
Overall, it was a good time at the cineplex.
Everything STAR WARS! [Spoiler tags mandatory]
After recently seeing it, I was left disappointed even though I lowered my expectations after The Force Awakens – and despite a few memorable moments… The Last Jedi doesn’t do the Star Wars universe much justice.
I can only see it appealing if we limit our enjoyment of film to the purely aesthetic. Apart from the blatantly obvious and undeniable pacing and characterisation issues, Aaron Ross Powell perfectly captures my thoughts on the deeper flaws of Episode VII. This is not a well-made Star Wars film once you go beneath what are ultimately distractions of nostalgia, lightsaber fights, pretty sets, and space battles.
Those saying it’s the “best” Star Wars since Empire truly puzzle me.
If you read my review I think it’s mostly down to people who are happy to see Shock and Awe… that people looking for conventional elegance will just be disappointed.
It is true though that the position of previous trilogy heroes though has been compromised perhaps too much.