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  #1941 (permalink)  
Old 17th June, 2015, 02:27 AM
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Saw "The Imitation Game" (2014) two nights back, I must say I liked it a lot. Benedict Cumberbatch is a fine, fine actor, I see Oscars galore in his future. I have seen little of Keira Knightley but I acknowledge that she's very good at her craft, not to mention very beauteous, this always hurts a career on film or stage. Two thumbs up.

"X" (?) An Australian police vs. prostitutes film of recent vintage is a good drama where the cops are beyond corrupt. There are a lot of movies titled "X" on imdb, but I can't find this one. Refreshingly different, and plenty violent. Recommended.
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  #1942 (permalink)  
Old 17th June, 2015, 03:41 AM
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Review: 'X' Is A Sexy But Bleak Thriller, Australian Style (X (2011) - IMDb)

Been looking forward to "The Imitation Game" awhile now, will get there!
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  #1943 (permalink)  
Old 18th June, 2015, 02:55 AM
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I really like "The Imitation Game," I hope you do too.

Thanks for locating this particular "X," it made a dull night a lot faster!
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  #1944 (permalink)  
Old 23rd June, 2015, 05:53 AM
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I second your liking of "Rumpole of the Bailey" TV series, there are a number of BBC series I enjoyed on PublicTV and have since added to my TV collection. Examples are "Chef", "Are You Being Served", "Robin of Sherwood", "Good Neighbors", and others. Of course, there are also many US series I enjoyed, even going back to "Mannix"! A later PublicTV example being "The Red Green Show"!

PS. A film I'm really hoping to see come out on BD is "The Commitments" (1991), stupendous!
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  #1945 (permalink)  
Old 24th June, 2015, 01:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cloasters View Post
Benedict Cumberbatch is a fine, fine actor, I see Oscars galore in his future.
There were a lot of things wrong with "Star Trek: Into Darkness". Benedict Cumberbatch's performance of Kahn was NOT one of them; indeed I thought his and Peter Weller's performances were the only things that made the movie tolerable. The script was essentially crap.

I first encountered Mr. Cumberbatch in the BBC's most recent incarnation of Sherlock Holmes (2011 I think?), on NetFlix. He quite impressed me there.

I agree, a fine actor, and I look forward to what he produces in the future.

Last edited by Gizmo; 24th June, 2015 at 01:51 AM.
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  #1946 (permalink)  
Old 24th June, 2015, 03:29 AM
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I've made it into the second half of the complete "Rumpole of the Bailey" Thames series. Sigh, I'll hate seeing the last of them, right now it finishes off my day in a most satisfactory manner.
Leo McKern was born in Australia (fooled me, I thought he was Brit to the bone) in 1920 and died in 2002 in Bath, England. He had very extensive stage experience in Shakespeare works and received high marks in many movie appearances. Perhaps best known for his "Rumpole" character, he tickles me as the barrister (lawyer that practices in court in England) in that he nearly always wins and makes the opposing Crown forces look the compleat jackasses they usually are.

I've seen many of the "Are You being Served?" episodes and bought a couple volumes of "Good Neighbors." They've faded into the past and to be truthful they never completely floated the boat.

I watched "Red Green" for years. I decided to order a $25 coffee mug with Red's mug on it to support the show. Turned out to be plastic. Wrote the show off at that point, that's one ugly mug.

You're right about "Star Trek Into Darkness," Gizmo, it is not a very good film. I was amazed how evilly Benedict Cumberbatch played "Khan" as that character was defined by Mr Corinthian Leather himself, certainly not a pale faced Englishman. Cumberbatch was astoundingly threatening!
Kudos squared!
They produce new episodes of "Sherlock" when they get around to it, it's not on a tight schedule. We must wait with baited breath, sigh.

Speaking of Netflix, there's a new series named "sense Eight" available. I've seen the first plus a thin slice of the second episode. It's produced by the Wachowskis, of "The Matrix" and many other great film fame. Holy crudomoly, hang on to your seat. I think it's gonna be a great one! Highly recommended!
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  #1947 (permalink)  
Old 24th June, 2015, 03:48 AM
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Read "The Hunger Games" by Suzanne Collins last weekend and the writing is wonderful (wondering what else she has written or is currently writing). Am currently tackling the second book and will eventually view the movies. More than impressed with her writing!
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  #1948 (permalink)  
Old 25th June, 2015, 03:21 AM
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I think I read "The Hunger Games," but I'm not 100% certain. The first film was quite well done, of the latter ones... the first is OK, the next perishingly horrible and I doubt I'll see the finale because movie-wise it can't at all be surprising. Doubt I'll read the rest of the books, the third film in the series is THAT terrible. It destroys the whole story. Greedy producers, it's more the norm nowadays, sigh.
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  #1949 (permalink)  
Old 25th June, 2015, 05:28 AM
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I find this stuff difficult. I'm a major fan of the Harry Potter series (J.K. Rowling), but having started with the movies -- I'm satisfied the books are better! I'm currently engrossed in Suzanne Collins second Hunger Games book and have no prediction on the films (have the first three at hand).

Have to say, she's getting me interested in revisiting the "Dragonriders of Pern" series (Anne McCaffrey). Most of the sci-fy/fantasy fiction I've read has been by male writers, perhaps time to spend more time with the women?
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  #1950 (permalink)  
Old 25th June, 2015, 06:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cloasters View Post
I watched "Red Green" for years. I decided to order a $25 coffee mug with Red's mug on it to support the show. Turned out to be plastic. Wrote the show off at that point, that's one ugly mug.
I used to LOVE the "Red Green" show. Some of the stuff he did was just amazing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cloasters View Post
I was amazed how evilly Benedict Cumberbatch played "Khan" as that character was defined by Mr Corinthian Leather himself, certainly not a pale faced Englishman. Cumberbatch was astoundingly threatening!
Kudos squared!
I was astonished as well. I thought Ricardo Montalban gave the absolute best rendition of Kahn that was possible. I'm not sure the Benedict gave a BETTER interpretation, but it was certainly every bit as good.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cloasters View Post
They produce new episodes of "Sherlock" when they get around to it, it's not on a tight schedule. We must wait with baited breath, sigh.
Yeah, I understand there is a special coming, followed by another 3 episode series. I'm really looking forward to it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cloasters View Post
Speaking of Netflix, there's a new series named "sense Eight" available. I've seen the first plus a thin slice of the second episode. It's produced by the Wachowskis, of "The Matrix" and many other great film fame. Holy crudomoly, hang on to your seat. I think it's gonna be a great one! Highly recommended!
I'm glad you think "sense Eight" is worth watching. I'll give it a go based on your recommendation. "Jupiter Ascending" was an utter stinker, IMO.
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  #1951 (permalink)  
Old 25th June, 2015, 07:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TrevorS View Post
I find this stuff difficult. I'm a major fan of the Harry Potter series (J.K. Rowling), but having started with the movies -- I'm satisfied the books are better! I'm currently engrossed in Suzanne Collins second Hunger Games book and have no prediction on the films (have the first three at hand).

Have to say, she's getting me interested in revisiting the "Dragonriders of Pern" series (Anne McCaffrey). Most of the sci-fy/fantasy fiction I've read has been by male writers, perhaps time to spend more time with the women?
Oooooh, "Dragonriders of Pern", EXCELLENT series.

If you like Anne McCaffrey and Dragonriders, you should check out Mecedes Lackey and the "Dragon Jousters" series. She's apparently also written some stuff with Anne McCaffrey. There's also some other stuff she's written that I've not gotten to.

You should also check out Andre Norton. She wrote the 'Witchworld' series that I read in my youth. I recall it being good stuff. Like most authors, she has a great deal of other writing as well.
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  #1952 (permalink)  
Old 26th June, 2015, 04:37 AM
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I agree, JK Rowling is a superbly talented writer. I read the entire "Harry Potter" series before seeing the first film. She is amazing, I'd love to have 15% of her talent, etc, etc. The first "Harry Potter" movie was very charming, it roped me into all of the movies, not all of them were superb, but the books certainly are.
It's a shame, personally speaking, that she isn't the "working class hero" she was trumpeted to be, but her ability is stellar.

I'm not as much of a sci-fi and fantasy fan as youse guys. I read far too many reality/history books and should re-visit a lot more fiction. It's said to be good for you! I want to read a second Ursula K Le Guin book, it's been far too long.

"Red Green" was extremely funny in a very refreshingly offbeat way. "Red Green" had superb writers, I assume Steve Smith aka Red Green himself was a major one. The complete series is available for $299.00 from Amazon. It's a daunting price, but you get 300 episodes. The few very old, old episodes I've seen weren't very funny, raw talent, cheap writers and a very, very small budget were to blame. I bought "The Duct Tape" movie, it was good but not great. Achieving the comic intensity of a 30 minute show in a full length film is impossible. It's a great show to be saved for the ages, imo.

I have to nod in agreement, "Jupiter Ascending" was not a good effort. The Wachowskis let us down with this one. I liked seeing Noomi Rapace in something other than "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" Swedish series, but the film just didn't have "it."
It's good to read that more "Sherlocks" are in the pipeline, yay!

I've finished episode 5 in "sense8," I must say it's wonderful. Completely cinematic, it's NOT a "tv" series. It's original, hard to pull off nowadays!
I can't remember seeing her before, but Nomi Marks (oops, the actress's name is Jamie Clayton) knocks my socks off, she is a very good actor and she's bewitchingly beautiful. Three thumbs up!
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  #1953 (permalink)  
Old 28th June, 2015, 05:48 AM
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Don't know much about J.K. Rowlings, though I understand back when she wrote "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone", she was a single Mum working as a waitress with little money. Of course, today, she's wealthier than the Queen (and has a husband!) The first book & film will probably always be my favorite since they introduced me to that amazing parallel world. One that I find more believable than pure fiction. I find Suzanne Collins work to be very believable too. Using our own world as a spring board seems to work pretty well for me.

I've only previously occasionally stumbled across "The Red Green Show" on PBS (long gone from my available line up) but I always enjoyed it -- like that quirky stuff ! Also enjoyed the Brit programming when I caught it. Used to enjoy "Red Dwarf" as well as "Dr Who", especially with Tom Baker (my personal favorite Doctor.) There's a number of series I appreciated, "Good Neighbors", "Are You Being Served", "As Time Goes By", "Keeping Up Appearances", "Last Of The Summer Wine", so much good stuff!

Interested in viewing "Jupiter Ascending". Don't know if I'll enjoy it, but seems somewhat whimsical like "He-Man" plus I enjoy Sci-Fy, so worth a try. (Still don't think much of the second two "Matrix" efforts -- utterly discard-able.)

PS. Am finding the Suzanne Collins works totally engrossing. Not finished the third volume yet, but am inclined to suggest all three.
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  #1954 (permalink)  
Old 29th June, 2015, 03:29 AM
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I agree that JK Rowling let us slip painlessly and effortlessly (important) into an extremely interesting parallel world. Another great thing about the "Harry Potter" books (and the films to a lesser yet faithful degree) is that the long, long, very complicated story and world created therein MAKES SENSE from start to finish. That alone is a fantastic accomplishment, imo.
According to the brief biographic info I've seen, she was on Welfare for a while, which now hardly exists in Britain. TPTB are cutting it as fast as they can here too. It's amazing that she navigated the book and movie royalty jungle so well! I'm glad she's richer than the queen--after all she WORKED for it.

Pretty certain I read the first volume of "The Hunger Games." I agree that Suzanne Collins is a good writer (with the caveat that the plot is too simple, iirc), and all of the films past the first one let the story down. Shame on the producers.

I liked "Red Dwarf" for the first season, it was full of surprises. I also liked the theme song a lot!

Tom Baker is by far the best "Doctor Who," a few of the others were OK, but he rang the bell the loudest. Of the modern ones I only watched a good bit of the 2005 series. Matt Smith is goofy looking but made a good doctor, Billie Piper really lit up the set, she added a LOT of energy. She's chubby yet a hottie, and Karen Gillen was a babe but lacked a surfeit of talent imho, to be polite.
However, she played the blue skinned very nasty and dangerous character of "Nebula" in "Guardians of the Galaxy." (2014) Bit of a shocker to find that out, tbh. More talent than I gave her credit for, shame on me.

I missed "As Time Goes By," but enjoyed "Last of the Summer Wine," those old geezers really pegged the aging process well. I should be so lucky. And the Yorkshire accent really tickles me.
Afraid I would have strangled Patricia Routledge as the gigantic pita she played in "Keeping Up Appearances." I truly hated that character, therefore the show was unbearable.

OTOH, in "Hetty Wainthropp Investigates" (1996-1998) I found her most charming and agreeable. She's a good actor.

I agree, the second and third "Matrix" efforts were sub-par. I'll assume that the Wachowskis were building up a war chest to support further superb efforts. Such as "V for Vendetta" (2005) Starring Hugo Weaving and Natalie Portman-- a film guaranteed to be ignored by the critics in the USA, it's far too radical and upsetting to the established social (err, financial) order.

Too bad "Jupiter Ascending" (of 2015?) isn't a great one, ymmv.
"sense 8" is a Netflix series of films (not tv episodes) that's available now.
IMHO, it's fantastic. It's a Wachowskis' effort. Highly, highly recommended!
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  #1955 (permalink)  
Old 1st July, 2015, 12:00 AM
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Finally finished Suzanne Collins' third volume "Mockingjay", and definitely a very well done book. It covers a fair amount of territory and the density is particularly high in the late chapters. so I'm guessing the decision to break it into two films was probably good. I find the books to be more character/relational than action centric and I suspect that's a harder sell with today's typical spectacle-hungry film audience. The first book provides an introduction to the world, mostly via the vehicle of the games, the second two expand well beyond that. Am considering awaiting the fourth film before viewing any of them.

Your reaction to "Keeping Up Appearances" reminds of mine to "All In The Family". Jean Stapleton was a very capable character actress and Carrol O'Connor a very good actor, but I really couldn't enjoy it because I found it too mean spirited. Attractions of the Brit series are Patricia's pitch perfect facial expressions, the good-natured long suffering husband (and his facial expressions), her "corrected" pronunciation of their amazing last name, and the never ending complication of the in-laws. Very clever show.

"Sense 8" sounds interesting, will have to look into it.
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  #1956 (permalink)  
Old 1st July, 2015, 03:44 AM
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It's true, today's audiences seem to want too see death and destruction above all. Male audiences, at least. Maybe "The Hunger Games" movies could have been released in three epic films? IIRC, the "Mockingjay Part One" "film" revealed nothing of value in the story line. I'm glad that this splitting up of the story in movie land seems unneeded (but of course, you say that "Mockingjay" the book is very complicated, so I don't really know) in the books, If I guess correctly. Good on you for reading the entire series!

I too found Carrol O'Connor's boorish proto-fascist character in "All in the Family" too difficult to take. Arrgh, what an as*****! Maybe this is what spoiled Rob Reiner for me forever, his character having to knuckle under to King Unmentionable because of "the Meathead's" powerless domestic situation. Maybe the show's creator, Norman Lear was in truth preparing us for our glorious future? Ouch, that's painful!
Mr O'Connor and Jean Stapleton were fine, fine actors. Sally Struthers? Well, she got plenty of work, maybe I'm wrong.

If you can access Netflix, "sense 8" is a must see, imho.
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  #1957 (permalink)  
Old 2nd July, 2015, 09:24 AM
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Got a bead on "Sense8". Just ordered "Combat"(1962+) TV series off Ebay -- sure hope it works out, liked it as a kid! Looks like "Mockingjay Pt.2" is scheduled for November release -- fine, am in no rush.
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  #1958 (permalink)  
Old 3rd July, 2015, 03:30 AM
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I loved "Combat" as a kid, the writing was good enough to become comfortable with Vic Morrow's sneer of a face. What do we know about combat as kids? How else can we (some of us at any rate) be suckered into the army? I saw very little of combat while in the service of the US, I should make that clear.

Congratulations, you know the whole story of "The Hunger Games," so you've no need to waste time and money on the final film. I doubt I will.
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Old 4th July, 2015, 04:18 AM
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"Combat" seems popular among boomers -- very well done for the time, more about people at war than mayhem (probably wouldn't get the green light today.) I've read criticisms of the image quality and so I guess it's a gamble, but at worst, I guess I can resell.

I expect to watch the final Mockingjay film, I find the differences between books and films part of the interest factor ("Timeline" the book by Michael Crichton is excellent, whereas the film lost far too much in translation/casting -- ignore). I love "The Hobbit" by Tolkien, but the movies are not necessarily a good substitute -- first was a little drawn out but OK, got most of the way through the second before losing patience (will probably retry), have the third on hand.

Not entirely sold on "The Deathly Hallows" book by Rowling due to the denouement of the Hogwarts battle seeming rushed to me, the movie perhaps even more so. But, that's my only significant discomfort with the Potter series. Am wondering how the "Mockingjay" division into two will compare to "The Deathly Hallows" division into two.

Regarding "The Hobbit", I recommend the Tolkien book -- superb!

PS. For those in the US, happy 4th of July!!!
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  #1960 (permalink)  
Old 4th July, 2015, 06:05 AM
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I hope that the quality of the image in the version of "Combat" you receive is good. Yes, it was a people at war series, not a bang, boom, white phosphorus, repeated ad nauseam tv show. That made it great for its day.

Michael Crichton is indeed a most engaging author.

I think "The Hunger Games" is finished and done for me, the third "movie" was THAT bad. Sorry Ms Collins, you are good, but Hollywood can suck SO hard.

"The Hobbit, "Fellowship of the Ring," "The Two Towers, and "The Return of the King" series in print was parsecs better than the films, hands down. Peter Jackson made a great visual spectacle (mostly) of the books, I think he deserves much credit for that. But "stretching" and confusing the hell out of the story in multiple movies (not a good idea, imho) purely for money, tsk, tsk.

JK Rowling's finale in one book of "The Deathly Hallow's" was OK by me. The doubling of this last print volume into two films didn't grate on me too loudly, but the end of the story happened mighty quickly on screen, even though there was dramatic tension galore, it must be said. Maybe I didn't notice this in the final volume in print?

Happy Fourth of July!
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