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  #1721 (permalink)  
Old 18th March, 2014, 11:21 PM
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"Ocean's Thirteen," there are far worse movies. Watched "Dark City" for the second time last night, now I finally understand it. "Catching Fire," the second installment of the "Hunger Games" trilogy is surprisingly good. Then again there's something about the thrust of the drama that greatly pleases me.
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  #1722 (permalink)  
Old 22nd March, 2014, 10:36 PM
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Oliver Stone's Untold History of the United States departs from history as taught in American schools, at least as how I remember it. Some patriotic Americans will find much to disagree with. Yet I hope they do themselves the favor of watching it as told by Mr Stone. It may broaden their horizons a degree or two.
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Old 12th April, 2014, 10:48 PM
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Saw "The Producers" again last night. What a great flick yet it says very bad things about "us."
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  #1724 (permalink)  
Old 16th April, 2014, 06:17 AM
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"Dark City" is a personal favorite. Used to like to throw it on my "big" screen (home made 78"), but these days my projection screen lacks a projector !

Yes, "The Producers" is good, a true classic. One I saw recently and really liked is "Dream House" (2011). Appears the critics panned it, but it worked very well for me. Perhaps part of the problem is people expected a ghost story, whereas it's actually a thriller.
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  #1725 (permalink)  
Old 12th August, 2014, 01:35 AM
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Robin Williams died this morning at 63, suicide, apparently he's been very depressed lately. He leaves wife and children and a world of sad fans. Sorry to lose you Robin!
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  #1726 (permalink)  
Old 12th August, 2014, 11:07 PM
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I went to Redwood High for a year with Robin Williams, he was such an obvious genius that I never knew how to say "hello." We envied him because he was followed by an entourage of beautiful girls wherever he went. I will always miss him and I think the world will too.
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Old 13th August, 2014, 05:15 AM
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Thanks George, appreciate your input! Seems major to me!

Am in the process of obtaining a couple of Robin's films that I've been putting off for years, "Good Morning Vietnam" and "Good Will Hunting", also looking to upgrade my copy of "Insomnia", first time I saw him as a true actor rather than a comedian.

Other sad news -- Lauren Bacall died Tuesday at 89, am now looking to upgrade my copies of "Key Largo" and "The Big Sleep". She married Humphrey Bogart, lead of her first film (at 19), and later Richard Widmark. She was a great artist and lived a complete life, it's such a shame Robin felt it necessary to cut his short !
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  #1728 (permalink)  
Old 14th August, 2014, 10:10 PM
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There's a huge chunk of his filmography that I haven't seen, I'm looking forward to discovering them. I know what severe chronic Depression feels like, I don't blame him for saying goodbye. "Good Morning Vietnam" isn't my favorite, but being there was different from all Hollywood imaginings, except for "Platoon" which seemed very realistic to me.
Lauren Bacall was so hot that she probably melted many expensive glass lenses. Crikey she was beautiful and extremely good at her craft. Can't say that she was stolen in her prime. "The Big Sleep" is my favorite Noir, they don't make them better!
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  #1729 (permalink)  
Old 15th August, 2014, 04:41 AM
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I watched "Good Morning Vietnam" once long ago (apparently his break-through film) and didn't much care for it, but that was then and now may be different. My interest in "Good Will Hunting" was always Minnie Diver and Matt Damon, seems like it's time I pay more attention to Robin's contribution, time I actually watched "Dead Poets Society" as well.

My personal favorite Robin Williams film is "Jumanji", which I understand is largely ignored. A smaller but good film (IMO) is "The Final Cut", a Sci-Fi effort (am fond of Mira Sorvino). I'm also planning to check out "Mork and Mindy" and try to catch the relevent episodes of "Happy Days". Generally, the presence of Robin's name on the Marquee wouldn't strongly attract me, but his performances are generally warm and sympathetic. I suspect he we most successful as a comedian, but he could be enjoyed as an actor as well.
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Originally Posted by cloasters View Post
Lauren Bacall was so hot that she probably melted many expensive glass lenses. Crikey she was beautiful and extremely good at her craft. Can't say that she was stolen in her prime. "The Big Sleep" is my favorite Noir, they don't make them better!
Funny you say that, the photo of her in that first film with Bogart at age 19 (and the "just whistle" clip) defines what "smoldering" looks like, never before knew, she must have been one hell of a woman to be in a relationship with ! I very much like noir, both early and modern. "Red Rock West" (1993) with Nicolas Cage is very good.

PS. "Platoon" (1986) is the king of the Vietnam war movies, there are other good efforts, but that's the king! It was long after that film before I could get past my loathing of Tom Berenger -- speaks to the quality of his acting (and others). Having said that, my favorite Tom Berenger film is "The Substitute" (1996), after which I forgave him for his "Platoon" character! Wonderful (loved Diane Venora too !) My most hated Vietnam war film is "Casualties Of War" (1989), Sean Penn's character is absolutely despicable, turned me off him for a long long time -- find that film too wrenching! My favorite Sean Penn film is "Bad Boys" (1983).

PPS. I'm reading Robin was experiencing early symptoms of Parkinson's disease (reportedly per his wife.) That's the illness Matthew Broderick has fought for years (diagnosed 1991) -- he continues to fight it and created a foundation to promote a cure! Much respect to both Matthew and Sarah Jessica Parker, his wife since May 1997.
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  #1730 (permalink)  
Old 15th August, 2014, 11:47 PM
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Saw "World's Greatest Dad" last night, not a happy flick and I won't spoil the ending. "Dead Poet's Society" is great, imho. I haven't seen "The Final Cut," but I will. I'm told that "Jumanji" scared the living **** out of little kids, but I liked it. My Step Mom died from Parkinson's, it's a horrible way to go. I'm a Mira Sorvino fan too. It's not everyone's cup of tea, but she was great with Lisa Kudrow in Romy and Michele's High School Reunion.

Movies--where would I be without them?
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  #1731 (permalink)  
Old 16th August, 2014, 09:36 AM
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If you like Mira Sorvino, then you have to like "Mimic", though there are two versions out there, the DVD and Canadian BD are probably considered the director's cut, the US BD is abridged ! The Mimic follow ups are also interesting and worth checking out, but they don't include Mira. (Reminds me of "The Cube", the first is best, but the two follow ups are pretty darned respectable!)

Another possibility is "The Replacement Killers", but although I think the performances of her and the leading man (Yun-Fat Chow "The Killer") are good, something seems off (Script? Director?) and so it's easy to become disengaged ! A shame, it should be more powerful than it is!

I'll have to check out "Romy and Michele's High School Reunion", one that I've tended to sidestep! (Something to do with High School I guess !)
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  #1732 (permalink)  
Old 16th August, 2014, 10:02 PM
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I'll buy the DVD version of "Mimic" when I purchase "Captain America-Winter Soldier" later this month. Maybe Yun Fat Chow has a "cult" following? I really like "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Tiger", but the man does not generate suspension of disbelief, does he? OTOH, Michelle Yeoh is fantastic, yet I'm sure I'm swayed by her beauty along with her acting ability.
"Romy and Michele's" etc is a chick-flick, but as women are so much different than men (along with being exactly the same), I welcome help in deciphering la difference!

Have you seen Sin City? Highly stylized, very dark and quite violent. Yet it's a must see imho.
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  #1733 (permalink)  
Old 20th August, 2014, 07:23 AM
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I have the Canadian BD version of "Sin City" (available well before the US release) and the opening scene was sufficiently jarring for me that I haven't managed to get back to it. I understand the US version is the better of the two and so I'll probably try to pick it up from there, have it on file.

If you haven't seen "Cube" (1997), it's a must see if you like imaginative techno-psychological thrillers. I saw the publicity for "The Killer" and the follow up "Hard Boiled" and have a copy of the first. I thought Yun-Fat Chow was effective in his role, though it could be he's pretty much typed. Can't say I looked that closely during "Replacement Killers", I tend to be preoccupied with Mira , just thought he worked! Should probably revisit "The Killer" and visit "Hard Boiled" (in progress.)

Michelle Yeoh is something special, she's been a major in Asian cinema for some time (have a couple of hers on LD). Enjoyed her performance in "The Heroic Trio", together with Maggie Cheung and Anita Mui. Western audiences probably know her best from James Bond "Tomorrow Never Dies", but she's so much more than a "Bond" girl (as strongly suggested in the film!) She is one powerful actress!

Have a copy of "Romy & Michele" on tap now, but the high school bimbo flavor is a tough swallow. Still, if experience is all comfortable, is there any experience? Just ignore me, I clearly face challenges !

PS. Don't know if you're open to documentaries on YouTube, but Vietnam Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 are pretty powerful viewing.

PPS. The venerable New York Times is become a garbage sheet. They pander to both the Ferguson Police Dept and perhaps worse, the ISIS/ISIL/"Islamic State" destruction as supported by the Quoran! The West clearly has continued difficulty comprehending what Islam/Quaran actually is. The Quran and Islam are an abomination in the eyes of the Lord we as Christians have learned to believe in (this isn't a mystery, just spend the time to learn). But that doesn't suggest in the least that the power of Islam is at all reduced. The Quoran provides limited quarter to children of the book, no quarter to any else! Are you ready to convert, or will you pay the tax/tribute to be able to continue? This is the Quoran!
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  #1734 (permalink)  
Old 22nd August, 2014, 12:11 AM
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Dunno how the Canadian version of "Sin City" starts, but the US release's beginning isn't how you say in America... happy? But it's a VERY dark film, literally and on the screen. I think it's a must-see because of the amazing stylization. Jessica Alba ALWAYS helps, as well.
IMDb.com doesn't list a "Cube" with Robin Williams, is that the exact name? If so, IMDb has something against that version!

"Romy and Michele's etc." isn't a perfect film(how many movies are-five, maybe ten?) if you don't like it you can't be held accountable for taste.

If I'm in a self-flagginating mood maybe I'll look up Viet-Nam 1,2,3 on Netflix. Being there was all the "amusement" I needed. PBS's special(maybe 6 parts?) was excellent, imho.
I frequently watch documentaries on Netflix. Actually saw Lars von Trier's "Nymphomaniac parts 1 and 2" on too often lackluster Netflix the other nights. Not happy films for the title character, but they hold your interest, assuming that it's "indecent."

The New York Times lost 95% of it's credibility dcades ago, along with the rest of American Major Media. Six corporations owning all of it is reason enough to avoid it at all costs.
Two years as an inmate, plus one more in a low security facility of the Catholic Church cured me of Christianity for life. YMMV.
The Muslims seem to be another horrific religion, I don't endorse them either.
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  #1735 (permalink)  
Old 22nd August, 2014, 01:37 AM
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One of the charms of "Cube" (1997) is that the actors are all unknowns (so to speak). Same is true for "Final Destination" (2000), another gem. I never watched "Into The Blue" (2005) with Jessica Alba, though I understand she was pretty hot in it. I don't at all care for Paul Walker's "acting" and so I skipped it -- not sure I've ever seen a film with her in it. Think I'll pick up "Camp Nowhere" (1994) with Christopher Lloyd, seemingly her first film.

I'll definitely watch the rest of "Sin City", just found that first scene murder twist a bit much. Yes, the stylization is pretty awesome -- will try again ! Will also get back to "Romy & Michele" -- can't ignore Mira! Wow, you were in Vietnam, eh? I was in college doing the student deferment thing. I'm always watching for good documentary info on that war (other things as well, I'm something of a history junky). I'll look into the PBS effort, thanks for the tip! Do you like horror? Do you like Audio Books (just working my way through Ian Fleming's James Bond novels)?

Yeah, the whole religion scene can be a little crazy, but Islam is something yet again. Political correctness seems to protect it in the West, but you'll notice, no Cleric/Mullah condemns ISIS/ISIL (nor any previous Islamic "terrorist" group/action), they all recognize their own religion. You may have noticed a supposedly "moderate" Cleric strongly wanted to found a Mosque adjacent the Twin Towers Memorial in NYC -- a traditional step by Muslims to commemorate a victory. Pretty damned awful excuse for a religion, and a serious threat to all other peoples!
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  #1736 (permalink)  
Old 23rd August, 2014, 12:18 AM
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You still have a Laser Disc player, amazing. It struck me that LD's seemed to be the same size as LP's. I often wonder whether films shot on video tape offer the same wonderful depth of field that film has--darn near "had." Hang on, video tape definitely didn't. I guess they're shot onto a disc nowadays?

"Camp Nowhere's" premise is most amusing, but at 5.8 from the Internet Movie Data base I'll skip it for now. Yes, I was in Viet-Nam. I had a student deferment too, but honestly felt that I had to bear witness, of course I had no idea how eye opening that would be. I lost almost all of my high school friends because of it, yet I hope the fullness of time revealed to them that they had parents happy to send them to Canada and Sweden, my parental units didn't care. "Platoon" is the most accurate, but Oliver Stone was in country. "Deer Hunter" was terrible, imho, and "Heart of Darkness" as told by Francis Coppola had very little to do with the real war. No movie on earth is like being in a effing war. Wonder why veterans are some of the most fervent workers for peace?

I was ready to retch after the opening scene of "Sin City," but all is not lost, as you'll discover if you can carry on with it. Does "Cube" feature Nicole de Boer, made in '97? Rates 7.4, so I'll check it out. I love to read, but my eyes may be going bad on me. If so I'll have to Audio Book. I read all of Ian Fleming's JB books in high school, and have seen very few of the post-Fleming films. I guess I'm not a true fan of Horror, but the very best of the genre is acceptable. But not "Texas Chainsaw etc." and its ilk.

I posted that I'd avoid politics, so I'm resisting the urge to comment on current events.
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Old 23rd August, 2014, 04:42 AM
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I became interested in LD when everyone else started getting out of them mid 90's, wasn't impressed with the sound I heard from DVD (hurt my ears), but LD LPCM is excellent. I have three of four players and a pretty fair collection of previously used discs. Was eventually able to solve the DVD sound issue and now have a considerable number of DVDs, some having replaced LDs, but LD often wins the comparison. I also have a pretty fair number of HD DVDs and several players (first one bought Summer 2006). Further LDs have been replaced by high def discs, but a large number remain. I still have many films recorded on S-VHS. Still like film (grain is fine with me), but I understand direct-to-disc is pretty common today -- never got into that end of it, I'm a viewer !

I've no confidence in Jessica Alba's acting chops, but I do of Christopher Lloyd's (eg. "Back To The Future"). I'm thinking "Camp Nowhere" should be a safe choice. Your "Heart of Darkness" reference reminds me of Joseph Conrad's novel which I see was adapted to film (1993), think I'll check it out. I'm guessing the one you actually had in mind was "Apocalypse Now" (1979). I suspect that film was more intended as an art house project than a depiction of the war. Sort of a Vietnam war abstraction or parable, maybe an exercise in metaphysics?

Your mention of Nicole led me to check her filmography and I like "Christmas Town" (2008) and since I also enjoy "The Dead Zone" (1983), am going to take a look at the 2002 series "Dead Zone" as well. There are a fair number of AudioBooks on Youtube including Tolkein, Stephen King, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Issac Asimov -- perhaps worth taking a look!
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  #1738 (permalink)  
Old 23rd August, 2014, 11:19 PM
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My dad had an LD player, I was amazed at the quality, not to mention the then giant screen. I never had a LD or a VHS machine. Nor a DVD or BD player until years after "everyone else had them." Am I a Luddite? Only in a small way, I was too poor to afford what "everyone else had" for a long time. C'est la vie.

Christopher Lloyd is up there in the pantheon of best actors, Jessica Alba? Not so much, but she's one of the world's hottest women on screen, which she does extremely well in "Sin City."

Yes, 'Apocalypse Now' is indeed a film adaptation of Joseph Conrad's novel, that's why I say it isn't a movie about our fiasco in Viet-Nam.

I've only seen Nicole de Boer in the last season of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. She certainly is cute, but I really have no other reference for her acting ability.
Stephen King is a great writer, but the only movie adaptation of his(I've seen a handful, all stinkers. "The Silver Bullet?" puhlease.) that I think is great is "The Green Mile."

I don't think that the movie version of "The Shining" had much to do with the book. Stephen King agreed, he was furious about it. "Room 237" is a film about the movie "The Shining." The difficulty is that Stanley Kubrick is a certified genius with an IQ of 200, I'm sure that the novel was far too boring a story for him to take to the screen. However, I read and thoroughly enjoyed Stephen King's novel, long before the movie came out.

I sincerely wish that Michael Clarke Duncan had lived longer. I greatly enjoyed the tv series "The Finder," and teared up when I learned he had died.
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Old 24th August, 2014, 03:40 AM
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Yes Nicole does seem cute, and as I said, I liked her in "Christmas Town", but do you remember Kirstie Alley as "Saavik" in "The Wrath Of Khan"? Damn, was she sexy ! I like her as an actress generally, but her Star Trek presence was perfect!

LD was very good except when it wasn't. Your previously mentioned "The Deer Hunter" is an example of wasn't! Production quality was highly variable and the price tended to be high -- something of a captive market. When DVD was introduced, it had plenty of technical problems, the idiot fantasy that because something was digital it was clearly an improvement over analog was exactly that, an idiot fantasy ! 'Course, the perveyers of that fantasy were the damned marketing departments who wouldn't recognize quality if it chomped them in the ass, all those A-H's recognize is dollars. What, integrity? No F'ing Hell! HD DVD and BD have provided the best opportunity to-date for high quality viewing/listening. But reality is they only provide a modest subset of the huge library of films that have been released. That's why (IMO), the older formats are no less valid, it's entirely a question of what you can get your hands on for whatever film you happen to like. I have no problem with S-VHS, in fact it can be darned good! (VHS is generally a bit of a taller reach !)

I've been a movie/audio fan at least since early high school and I spent precious little "geld" on anything else. Equipment changed considerably over time and I kept up as best I could, but what I have now clearly suggests yesteryear. Is that a problem? No, not to me, I can still get a darned good picture and very satisfactory sound. My current biggest question in that regard is whether I should be saving for a recent modest cost upgrade LCD projector or a large LCD ! Well, either remains futures and most of my current movie viewing is via a PC monitor and speakers !

I've rambled enough! You have more content in your post that I need to respond to so let me get back to that a little later. Be assured I value the correspondence!

-- Trevor
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Old 24th August, 2014, 10:10 PM
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Good on you if you can find a large LCD screen, I didn't look extensively so I settled for an LED 40" screen. I know, it's extremely large by today's standards, my bad. My guess is that LED is a tiny bit faster than LCD--but LED screens can burn in, just like the vacuum tube monitors of yesteryear--but it takes much longer, I thimk. It's there in the fine print, which I read after buying the Samsung "smart tv." Which to me means--never connect it to the Web! I'm already fatigued by the two cameras that no such agency has high up my unmentionable passage. I want to avoid three or more, thanks.

I do blather on, sorry. It's said that only 5% of people can tell the difference between high khz digital sound and an LP record if they're blindfolded. My hearing is going fast, too many rock shows and explosions, so I guess I'll never discern the difference.
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