Movies You've only Just Watched


#1461

This is a trailer that I’ve just watched, so still slightly on topic?

Fahrenheit 451 is an incredible novel written by Ray Bradbury. Many people get the premise wrong, they believe that books have been banned, whereas actually it’s revealed that the public voted to get rid of books. It’s a great read and I think a few years ago there was a film called Equilibrium (Which is also incredible) but was loosely based on this book or a similar premise. I hope they do justice to this film.


#1462

Bros, I watched Black Panther on Saturday. Might possibly be my favourite MCU movie. Chadwick Boseman was absolutely great in the role, as was Michael B. Jordan. Only thing that didn’t sit right with me was that Andy Serkis has 4 scenes.


#1463

I’ve just finished watching Icarus on Netflix, a fantastic documentary providing insight into the doping scandal in Russia and how it was revealed. The premise was basically how Bryan Fogel, an amateur cyclist but also a playwright, was interested in how people such as Lance Armstrong managed to fool anti-doping federations over all the years and what effect doping has on a person. He was put in contact with the director of the Russian anti doping laboratory who basically agreed that if Bryan sent him urine samples while using banned substances in amateur races then he would send him the results to back up his research into doping. This research stops quickly and the story changes dramatically when this director becomes the whistleblower that discloses the state sponsored doping scandal that has been occurring in Russia for the last four or five decades and the rest of the film documents the ensuing chaos.

I didn’t read the description and just clicked it on Netflix, so I had no idea what I was about to watch, but I’m very glad I did.


#1464

fyi: ICARUS just won Best Documentary at the Oscars.


#1465

I’m a Tomb Raider fan and now I have “MoviePass” so I thought I’d go check out the new TOMB RAIDER!

Man, that movie was all over the place. It was a bit better than a typical “video game movie” but not by a huge margin. It had some good parts, some bad parts, and some downright weird parts.

The plot was loosely based on the 2013 game but very different. Yet as different as the plot was, it was almost as if it kept trying to be a shot-for-shot remake of the video game… including what I interpreted as a third-person floating camera perspective for a few seconds. Set pieces from that game were shoehorned in for their own sake. Obligatory “shooting” and “stealth” and “climbing” aspects were also thrown in as if they were being checked off a list.

There were supposed plot twists (re: “Trinity”), presented as shocking revelations, but they would surprise nobody who’s played the games, and also would be completely incomprehensible to anyone who hasn’t.

Remember the puzzles in Tomb Raider (or Uncharted)? Have you ever wanted to see one played out in live action in real time? This is the movie for you!

Every other line of dialogue was exposition yet I still learned almost nothing about the characters or their motivations.

But Alicia Vikander was great and the parts where she raided tombs were pretty good… there were a few smart parts. I would recommend it to Tomb Raider fans. I would recommend it to die-hard adventure genre fans. I would recommend it to nobody else.

Shame, really. There aren’t a lot of adventure movies in this vein and I think the franchise has the potential to be the next Indiana Jones or Pirates of the Caribbean if they took it just a little more seriously and put a little more effort in.


#1466

Darkest Hour, Don like pathos( that meter station scene…) , but actually enjoyed it
Der Untergang was far more realistic, I know it is about monster(Hitler) but I like historical movies in that manner( concentration about realism not pathos and big words)


#1467

Black Panther

Pretty good/entertaining, though a lot of the Panther action, like the opening action bit stopping the convoy with kidnapped women seemed almost unintelligible to me. The same goes for the one-on-one final fight.

The way BPs suit ends up working also removes a lot of the stakes in his action to the point where they needed to “remove” that stuff for the final fight in order to make it work

It also seemed to me that the effects work was sub-par. Maybe they had a lower effects budget, or a new effects house involved?

Other than that I thought it was filled with good peformances (others have said it, but Michael B Jordan was really good), an interesting enough story (though I think the relationship between T’Challa and Nakia was utterly unconvincing. No chemistry at all), some impressive visual design (Wakanda looks great), and a pretty good score mixed with some cool songs.

The character of Shuri sort of confused me, since I had feelings both of annoyance and entertainment. It’s like the character rides the line between the two.

Not a fan of killing off Andy Serkis’s Klaue but I figure they’ll wriggle their way out of that somehow in a sequel.

All in all I found it quite enjoyable and I’m looking forward both to seeing Wakanda again in Infinity War, and in a sequel.


#1468

The thing that bothered me most about the movie was the last fight between T’Challa and Killmonger, was without any kind of suspense or thrills. The first fight on the other hand with no suits was much more engaging, entertaining and on point. But in generel this is my biggest grip with the MCU at the moment, that most fights are just CGI man vs CGI man…It feels lifeless and uncanny, it extremely obvious that it isn’t a choreographed fight between two actors, but two CGI characters jumping abound on all kind of surfaces.

I think the movie worked best when the suit wasn’t present. Sure it had some cool scenes, like the car chase. But overall the CGI felt cheap and rushed to a point where it took me out of the movie.


#1469

watched Black Panther and Tomb Raider. I’d say Black Panther is nice but both movies are ULTRA PREDICTABLE, especially TOMB RAIDER. They’re both good for a single watch time only. :blush:


#1470

Watched Thor: Ragnarok and it definitely the best movie in the series. There was a lot of things that made it super entertaining and then there was a colossal part of the movies desgin that almost ruined it.

Everything damn scene was a joke/pun…It’s not that the jokes wasn’t funny or somewhat funny. But the over reliance on the joke joke joke joke joke pun pun pun pun pun really took a lot of the enjoyment out of the movie for me. I like humor in these kind of movies, but accidental humor and more subtle is much more effective. Instead it was forced down your throat at every turn of dialog.

This is actually my only real problem with the movie and sadly it’s a big part of the film. Other then that it had awesome fights (Thor vs Hulk), awesome Soundtrack, a cool villain and great character chemistry.

If it wasn’t for the forced humor at every little turn, it would be my favorit MCU film.


#1471

Ragnarok, along with Homecoming, Guardians and Ant-Man, are my favourite MCU movies and the only ones I could see myself rewatching. The rest are decent (Winter Soldier) to downright trash (Dark World).


#1472

I can’t stand Guardians of the Galaxy vol.2 the first one is meh/okay. Homecoming is it’s own little jewel.


#1473

I haven’t seen Guardians 2 and I don’t really plan to, but I enjoyed the original (other than the ending which was total garbage)


#1474

Watched Red Sparrow. Have one thing to say: Remove kebab.


#1475

Eh, I liked Guardians 2 more than the first. It was really focused on the characters themselves, almost the entire value of the film comes from going on their emotional journeys (my favourite being Rocket’s story). It was nice, they spent the first film introducing characters with a fairly formulaic action plot, and they used the sequel to focus on characters in a more subdued, lowkey storyline.

Though they could have cut out Stallone, and most of the overdone jokes (as you pointed out with Ragnarok).


#1476

The reason I hate Guardians vol.2 is the humor, I find it cringe worthy and unbearable at best. I actually think the TMNT from 2014 is funnier and that movie is horrible on all levels. Also I hate characters like Baby Groot and I don’t get the appel of Rocket. The only character I actually find funny is Dax and the way he interacts with people.


#1477

The amazing thing about Rocket in vol2 is his arc. In the first movie, he’s introduced as this kind of stereotype kindly-space-thug and that’s all he stays in that film. The sequel opens with him pulling his usual bullshit, and consequence leads him down a path of self discovery with Yondu. These two find that, spiritually, they are one in the same and Rocket takes what he learns to heart, with the film ending on tears running down his face.

That’s why I liked the sequel, the writing outside of humour was so good. They made me care about a cgi raccoon’s internal conflict in a legitimate way, that’s not something a lot of these marvel movies have pulled off imo. I can’t think of any one of these MCU films, besides this one, that made me feel something for the characters on screen.


#1478

Just saw a commercial for Sicario pt2. Coming in June, though.


#1479

Saw READY PLAYER ONE:

Was it fun? Yes. With a capital “F”.
Was it good? Yes. but with a small letter “g”.

I want to start off by saying READY PLAYER ONE is far from the best film Spielberg has made. However, it is the work of a director still at the peak of his power, and already with nothing to prove. Spielberg’s biggest achievement here - in this Intellectual Property eat-all-you-can buffet of a movie that works like a game, about a game that is about all the movies and video games - is that yes… in the end (finally) the movie does have a human heart and does tell a human story that I think is somewhat important for today’s cyber generation.

At its center, READY PLAYER ONE tackles that increasing intrusion of virtual escapism and virtual economic rationalization that is affecting how we live and work in the real world. READY PLAYER ONE uses video games (particularly the video game to end all video games) as its sugar-coated wrapper. But Spielberg usually has good timing when selecting what themes he can sense are relevant, and in this one he asks us to enjoy (and later adds a note of caution) to this increasing importance that video games, virtual reality, and virtual currency have in the real world.

The greater fantasy in this film actually begins from the off, and it’s not one that occurs from behind a set of virtual reality goggles. READY PLAYER ONE happens in a world where one video game - THE video game - is so valuable that everybody is playing it and has some degree of money in it. It’s a fantasy, because in real life gamers like us killed any chance of something like that happening: we shut down STAR WARS: BATTLEFRONT 2. But READY PLAYER ONE, like any good (small “g’”) movie asks us to presume what would happen if we didn’t.

Between action set pieces that occur in the virtual world of the OASIS, we learn what the OASIS means in the real world and it’s a lot of stuff that doesn’t feel that far away. We learn the OASIS has “items you can buy with real money”, “real items you can buy with virtual money”, we learn the game has a form of Perma-Death… you ‘zero out’… and you lose everything… If you can imagine a game whose singular Easter Egg quest for billions of dollars worth is so important that people have put their own savings into this game, then you have the kind of Hollywood fantasy parable for everything from Lootboxes to Bitcoin.

Unlike other films I’ve discussed here, it is not that important to discuss characters, or motivations (though they do have them), and to an extent some plot logic is not that important. That is because, READY PLAYER ONE is constructed almost exactly like a video game. The film introduces from the beginning that there is a quest to get to the “end of the Oasis video game” where an Easter Egg waits that will “solve all your real world problems forever”.

I found myself wondering throughout the film if the Oasis was not somehow responsible for the neglected state the real world was actually in. But at any rate, this is a remarkable construct for the film. It’s exactly what most action video games are like, and like many of the games that rely on this structure, everything drives towards that ultimate boss fight, that ultimate challenge, to grab that last prize, to win the hand of the princess, to get to that screen that lists the names of the people who made the video game.

This is the soul, the energy, of this movie. It is remarkable that it is all it ever really needs. Some have described READY PLAYER ONE as the most accurate video game movie there is because it actually feels a lot like one and they are right. For better or worse, characterization on this “video game movie” feels only about as deep as you can find in say a Bioware “epic” - one that hints at a larger world of clans, teams, and more gamer aliases with weird alphanumeric spelling - but Spielbergian film discipline means we only follow one such group from start to finish.

But if his discipline as a film maker is what keeps the film tight enough to say its message about how we must regard the real world and our real lives in a highly cyber-obssessed society, it is his childlike excess that barrels on whenever the Oasis sequences take hold.

READY PLAYER ONE, as a concept, is difficult to work with as a full novel, never mind as a 120 minute movie, and there are definitely points at which the film seems to jump quickly from point to point. Beyond the first challenge, the second and third challenges are more than a little hard to follow, and, to be honest, the lead characters of this film - who are the greatest Oasis players on the planet - issue out rapid fire exposition about why something works. This is the biggest weak point of READY PLAYER ONE as a conventional film. The amount of times characters and events leap headlong from one thing to the next.

Spielberg also uses his skills with cameras, music, and actors to conjure “a moment” or “a story beat” to actually substitute for moments and story beats rather than representing them. There are moments in the story where events seem only loosely supported by information, or none at all, but the music is swelling, the actors are emoting genuinely… and you know in your gut that “this is what’s happening”… And that’s exactly what happens. Times like these, I was unsure about whether I should be happy that my emotional viewing experience was now able to affirm things onscreen that normally should be down to my intellectual viewing experience.

In most cases, this would be pretty poor, but ironically, I found, that whenever it occurs in the Oasis (which is thankfully the majority of incidents) it is actually an accurate representation of Gamer Subculture. This is like, if you could step into HITMAN in an ultra real VR environment and you had to stay in touch while Fortheseven and Gule speedrun through The Showstopper and they’re telling you at the same time why everything they’re doing works. You can’t follow it precisely and you may take a (virtual) bullet hole through your (virtual) kidney in the process. But you can’t deny that it holds water because in the end they get both targets and soon you’re all walking out of the Palais de Waleska’s gates… and you think to yourself how great these guys must be (even if you’ve only spent time with them in some virtual Paris).

It must also be noted the film will remind some of the real life exploits of Prod1gyX who became the world’s first player to achieve Pirate Legend standing in the massive multiplayer title Sea of Thieves, with the help of a group of friends who happily play supporting cast to his status as the “main hero” which comes to show how closely life can sometimes imitate art.

One unusual side effect though of this film, is that while it warns people about how much we value our virtual enjoyment to the possible detriment of the real world, I can see from the comments and discussions surrounding this film that feedback has been dominated by people wishing the Oasis was real and while the film already contains about probably 300 or so references and actual character appearances from films and games both recent and classical, it seems that the fandom that watched this movie would happily fill themselves with 300 more things if the Oasis was real. Spielberg never realized what he did to the reputation of sharks when he made JAWS, so I guess now he has to contend with the way he has represented virtual reality and escapism in READY PLAYER ONE - for better or worse.

In the end, READY PLAYER ONE is a simple movie. With a simple message. That it has one, and manages to state it just clearly enough is its best quality. The rest is pure escapist energy that delivers on that one promise of films and video games - a fabulously virtual good time.

P.S.: You want to know about the references? Well, this is where I think Spielberg shows how clever he is. Much was made of the references, but in reality they weren’t important at all. But they were COOL (all caps). And it wasn’t just characters. One of the neat things about the Oasis was that you could have weapons and vehicles from any game or film you desired as long as you could afford it, so you have everything from Cowboy Bebop ship to Galactica Viper fighters, and a shop that sells you all the gear from Overwatch alongside stuff from Borderlands.

One of the characters even sports this bad boy in a hero sequence:

But… no chainsaw kill (PG-15 you know) :stuck_out_tongue:


#1480

So… I saw, finally, after sort of soft-refusing to see it because I really wasn’t interested… I finally saw JURASSIC WORLD:

There’s a couple of interesting personal stories I have about this picture. One of them is that I didn’t actually pay to see it. I managed to watch it as a benefit of being friends with someone in the industry.

The other interesting story behind me and JURASSIC WORLD was I remember back in 2012 having a conversation with a film producer about the universe of Jurassic Park. And he asked: “Well what would you do if you had to make one after the third movie? What premise would you use?”

I answered immediately, within ten seconds: "The park has to open. Simples.’

And then we talked about some other stuff I would put in the park. Namely a giant aquatic dinosaur. And we go 'nice talk… see ya in a few years." Years later. This happens. :stuck_out_tongue: (Disclaimer: As far as I can tell, the person I talked to was not involved with this picture.)

But anyways… about the movie. Well, it was definitely a fun movie. A bit oddly configured. But it definitely has a lot of energy in places where you want an action adventure film to have energy.

if there is any problem with the film, it’s that it doesn’t seem to regard most of its characters, save for Owen and Claire, with any genuine whole personalities. It also does not seem to treat them with the positions they were given in either the story, or the organizations and groups that operate within the fiction. Particularly off-putting was how Simon Masrani is given an initial spotlight as the “man who managed to open Jurassic Park” and not only is he excluded from a big corporate plot twist which should naturally have fallen to him, the film also allows him to wash his hands off of the evil genetic dinosaur experiment. Now, characters can do what they want in a story of course, but the film is guided by Natural Laws of its own that should sort of probe actions for a sense of karma. In this case, Masrani’s karma is that he dies in a fiery helicopter crash that happens from far away (practically in the background). He is “bailed out” of the plot and without him, some sense of order in some of the big twists and the militarized dinosaur sub-plot end up with no owners so they become distributed among other characters.

One character who has such a large stake in weaponizing the dinosaurs floats around the plot like he’s unsure of his position in the world, such that he ends up mentioning his intention to make attack dogs of the dinosaurs with everybody he talks to.

If that feels like a bit of a jumbled mess, take a hint: it is.

The disjointed positions and sort of off-balance character weights means that a lot of the gags don’t have the same power they would have if the story elements were tighter. Compare say, the death of Masrani described above, versus the gags involving Nedry in the first JURASSIC PARK film where he is tempted to risk the Park’s safety, and ends up in a harrowing predicament as his comeuppance for giving in to greed and it should be apparent that even though JURASSIC WORLD can come up with some of the most engaging and incredible thrill-inducing sequences since THE LOST WORLD, it can feel like you’re eating your lunch out of your lunchbox one compartment at a time - the film never feels quite whole except for the relationship of Claire and Owen.

Even the children, who normally provide the heart of Jurassic Park adventures, are kind of left to fend for themselves - literally in the film and dramatically in the story. It felt a bit forced that the parents had to be put in divorce proceedings, by the film’s plot - remember this film world which seems to have misplaced the stakes for Mr. Masrani which now also has seen it fit that divorcing parents would use Jurassic World as a diversion for their children while they break up their marriage - when in a better version of this story, the parents would either be not divorcing at all (so that Jurassic World becomes a FAMILY adventure) or maybe that Claire could have been their mother (post-divorce!) to begin with since the children are handed over to her after the opening minute.

Throughout the film there was this nagging feeling of apples falling off the apple cart. A series of little elephants in a room while the movie puts set piece after set piece in an effort to make you ignore them.

One of these little big elephants in the room is a secondary premise about a “fake dinosaur”. I was immediately taken out of the movie by the notion that a group founded on the purpose of bringing up “real dinosaurs” could turn around and manufacture a fake one for the sake of increased danger and thrills. I still have trouble accepting this, except to appreciate that this “unknown quantity monster” was great for coming up with gags and for exposing the futility of controlling prehistoric/psuedo-prehistoric giant creatures. The device would work better though had Masrani, the larger than life new boss of the new park, owned up to both the experiment as well as, say, the fact he was taking weapons contractor money to develop this strand of the park’s R&D to manufacture custom biological constructs for military purposes.

It would have given more weight to his nonchalance over costs and falling profits which was an issue brought up early in the film.

Beyond that, the film is shot beautifully, the gags are predictable, as is most if not all the outcomes. Our fun came from laughing with, as well as laughing at, the movie and in the end I have to say that I probably (probably!) wouldn’t have minded buying a ticket to this movie.

Still, I had a nagging feeling that “this film feels like it was written quickly in just three weeks”. Which… surprise!.. is the admission of director Colin Trevorow:

Considering what went on in the actual development and production of this film? It wasn’t too shabby. It’s the kind of film I’d stick around to see again if i bump into it while channel surfing.