What I Watched, What You Watched: Installment #88

This was another busy, busy week of movie watching. I finished watching Scream 3, which I already discussed earlier this week and I also watched The Professional, Beautiful Girls and V for Vendetta, which I discussed in my Natalie Portman feature. Beyond that I saw five films in the theater and one more to finish things up... I'd say ten movies in the span of seven days is pretty good...

Adam's Rib (1949)
QUICK THOUGHTS: Last week it was State of the Union out of Warner Home Video's upcoming "Tracy and Hepburn the Definitive Collection" DVD set and this week it was Adam's Rib and neither are necessarily great, but each has their charms. Adam's Rib is a legal drama with a share of comedy mixed in as Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn play a married couple that end up against one another in the courtroom after a woman shoots her husband for cheating on her. For the most part it's a rather annoying film to be entirely honest and it takes things quite far in the end, but the end is easily the best part even if I don't think it was entirely earned.

Adam's Rib was directed by George Cukor (The Philadelphia Story) and was nominated for an Oscar for its screenplay.

Buy It Now

Now it's your turn. What did you see? Did any of you go see Hanna? If so, did I oversell it or are you on board with me and loving it? If I did oversell it, were you able to enjoy it anyway? I certainly hope so.

  • RagingBull

    The Bourne Trilogy: I revisited this great trio of movies after a bite of nostalgia. Great series, never loses its flair. The movie lets the viewer sit back, enjoy the action while never letting the story droop. Like I read in a review few years ago, "Greengrass lets the action tell the story."

    The Candidate: I am a huge fan of Bob Redford and this movie is quite entertaining albeit not approaching greatness or anything. It plays on the idea that politics is all about what you make the people see and not what you really are. Redford is pitch perfect in the titular role.

    The Hustler: Like Redford, Paul Newman happens to be one of my faves. I absolutely loved The Hustler. The performance from Newman was so raw, full of energy that I was engrossed from the first moment in. The second and the third act are the show stealers while the first act is a good buildup. A must see.

    • Jack

      Huh, that's interesting. I revisited the Bourne trilogy too. I enjoyed the first, the second was very dissapointing though but the 3rd was a masterclass in action filmmaking in my opinion.

      The Hustler was a great film, Newman at his best.

  • Jack

    Haha, beat you by 1 :D

    The Bourne Ultimatum - I had watched the first two Bourne films in the previous week and after the hugely dissapointing Supremacy, I was anticipating this but was weary. Boy was I wrong to ever doubt this, it's one of the best action/spy films ever made! Some mindblowing scenes, from the waterloo station scene to the incredible chase in morocco, all leading up to an excellent finale. The best of the Bourne series, a genuinely fantastic film. 5 STARS

    Manhattan - A beautiful love letter to cinema, and a very funny one at that. Intelligent, witty and some exceptional dialogue. Allen very occasionally overdoes it but the chemistry of the actors and the acting itself allows the comedy to feel natural and fresh and most importantly, laugh out loud funny. The decision to film in black and white worked well, there are some beautiful shots of Manhattan in. My favourite Woody Allen film so far (although I highly reccomend anyone who hasn't to check out Radio Days) 5 STARS

    Seven Samurai - Believe it or not, this was my first Kurosawa film. (Don't chastize me TOO much, I'm only 15!) Suffice to say, I loved it. You can see it's influence on modern cinema and none of it has dated at all. It is a sprawing epic that some may find a daunting task but it is well worth it, this is one of the great masterpieces of all cinema. Some of the editing still dazzles to this day.
    5 STARS

    High Plains Drifter - Extremely eccentric with some heavy mystical tones that don't really work and take away from what was an authentic western feel. I was dissapointed by this one. Eastwood is good and there's a decent finale but that's pretty much it. 2 STARS

    Leaves of Grass - After Roger Ebert called it a masterpiece and the fact it had Edward Norton x2, I felt I had to watch this. It was a charming, well acted film and it's quirks worked well until the unfathomable decision to include increasingly inplausable bursts of gratuitous violence. This completely ruined the previous atmosphere. It's a tribute to Norton's acting that he managed to make the twins seem like two different actors and he held up the film well during it's weak moments. Unfortunately, the sporadic violence let the film down as well as a slightly unneccessary romance. Still, on reflection, it was worth watching. 3 STARS

    Sucker Punch - Went to see this at the cinema with some friends (I don't go to the cinema much, probably due to not wanting to spend money on films I only have a small interest in) and the film didn't really surprise me. I wouldn't go anywhere near to the lengths you would in your review, I thought it was good fun. The virtually wordless opening was very impressive but it started to go downhill from there. The visuals themselves were good but the plot took backstage and it started to become increasingly samey and predictable in the action sequences which were frankly an overload of explosions and frantic battles.

    The climax was surprising and I thought it was pretty good overall. The film was enjoyable and contained impressive moments with acting that wasn't completely hammy. However, coupled with Watchmen and the fact he's been going downhill since Dawn of the Dead (still his best film), I don't think he's the right man for the Superman film. At this point, he's going the way of Michael Bay and before anyone goes on about Nolan's influence, Spielberg's influence did not help Transformers.

    The Big Easy - Pretty good crime film. Contradicts itself at points but a slightly unconventional romance taking centre stage over murder was interesting. A tense finale too and an interesting depiction of New Orleans pre-Katrina. 3.5 STARS

    Fight Club - My second viewing of this and it still blew me away. It's certainly one of the best films I've ever seen, for reasons others have already expressed. 5 STARS

    Scarface - A brutal epic of a gangster film with a powerhouse performance from Pacino and a superb shootout at the devastating climax. Some slight pacing issues keep it from being at the Goodfellas/Godfather level but this is still one hell of a gangster film. 4.5 STARS

    Wendy and Lucy - Touching, unconventional and despite it's very slow pace, quite gripping. 4 STARS

    4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days - Intense and harrowing. The long tracking shots, in each scene the camera generally stays in the place for 10 minutes or so, works to great effect and the fact there is no music (save for the end of the credits) adds to the bleakness of it all. Some pretty horrific images, that aren't always on camera, stay with you long after the abrubt ending. Uncomfortable watching but it's masterful direction and superb acting don't allow you to look away. 4.5 STARS

    Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans - The cinematography in this blew me away. The way Herzog managed to use vibrant colours and give it a noirish look is beyond me, his use of post Katrina New Orleans is very well done as well. Cage's performance is manic to say the least, but it is never overplayed or uncomfortable to watch. This could easily be described as a very black comedy, and it's one of the best there is. Herzog is still riding high, this is a fantastic mystery film, each scene is a joy to watch and the ending lets you know you've just seen an exceptional film. The best of 2009 in my opinion. 5 STARS

    It sounds like I give out 5 stars easily but trust me, I don't. There are plenty of weeks I don't see any 5 star film, this was an unusually good week.

    • Rob

      I am kinda stunned by your take on the second Bourne film, which I find to be, by far, the best of the bunch. It is so much more visceral, intelligent, and emotionally resonant than the others (particularly next to the first). Glad to see a good review for Port of Call, which really was amazing. Wait a second! You are only 15?! You are doing a hell of a job so far as a cineaste.

  • Winchester

    Nothing in cinemas this week, but at home -

    I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997) - DVD rewatch. My actual plan this week had been to watch the entire Scream Trilogy again in prep for trying to catch Scream 4 this weekend, however that went slightly awry. So, in lieu of that I just watched this instead for probably the first time in several years. And guess what? It's not that shabby - certainly not compared to all the J-Horror remakes of the last few years. Kevin Williamson's script is much less knowing and self-reverential and the plot is far less clever than Scream, but as a simple slasher with a straightforward premise Jim Gillespie works an effective enough teen thriller. Well shot, it actually has some characterisation of it's cast fleshed out before they start to die, some great set-pieces (Gellar's death chase being the best of the whole film) and as I was watching it I was also struck by thinking about where all the casts careers went post this time (Gellar, Prinze Jnr, Phillipe, Hewitt and even Johnny Galecki has a small role at the start). Not a bad film after all the years since it was made. I've seen a lot worse.

    Zack and Miri Make a Porno (2008) - DVD rewatch. I love this flick when I'm in the mood for that sort of humour. The whole cast gels brilliantly (I LOVE Elizabeth Banks anyway no matter what she's in) and it keeps me chuckling along the route. Maybe a bit crude for some people's tastes but not for mine, like I said, when I'm in that mood. It's more of an attempt by Smith to make a Judd Apatow film but it has enough of his own style as well to not have that work against it,

    Moon (2009) - Blu-Ray rewatch. After catching Source Code last weekend I wanted to rewatch this, Jones' debut. An excellent little film that's visually beautiful and also anchored by a great Sam Rockwell performance. I think Kevin Spacey was miscast as the voice of GERTY though...........he seems to be trying too hard to do HAL and he fails. But that's a small complaint. It's leisurely pace makes it feel longer than it is, but it's a great little film.

    Star Trek (2009) - Blu-Ray rewatch. I simply love this film and for me it was the best blockbuster of 2009. Never tire of watching this film and looking forward very much to the sequel in 2012.

    The Killer Inside Me (2010) - DVD First Watch. It seems the violence here caused some controversy around this film when it came out. I have a couple of thoughts on that, because the violence is really mostly barely a minute or so of the whole film overall. I think the violence is shocking and caused anger because it's more like 'real' violence. It's not the easy cartoon bullshit that permeates Hollywood movies where people fight and struggle and don't get injuries, or jump off buildings through roofs into debris past an explosion and walk away with perfect hair. It's not that crap. It's the sort of violence that people are more likely to experience in their real lives and it's depicted that way. Winterbottom doesn't flinch from showing what a person who's been beaten half to death would look like and I think that's what shocks and repulses.

    The attack on Alba did physically make me gag watching it, as did the assault of Hudson later. But Winterbottom leaves himself open to attack because he gives all the male characters easy or offscreen deaths in comparison. I know the character of Affleck is meant to be a sociopath with women issues and maybe that's why the director spends more time on their attacks than the males but it doesn't work in the film.

    Aside from that the film just isn't that good anyway. It's well shot, but the ending had me in stitches at the aburdity of it. It's plot is one that's been seen before and I don't even think that Affleck's performance is that good (he was better in Gone, Baby Gone and Jesse James IMO) throughout. I've seen it now out of curiosity but it's just a poor film all round.

    I also in TV-land watched Garth Marenghi's Darkplace (2004) a six episode UK TV series that spoofs early 80s TV shows and horror writers. It thus has 'intentionally' bad dialogue, acting, blocking, effects, dubbing, etc and all that sorta stuff. I've seen it a few times now and it's interesting to watch. It's a relatively good example of spoofing with care and affection. But it wasn't a ratings hit in the UK so only one series was ever made.

  • m1

    The Diving Bell and the Butterfly-A brilliant and breathtaking masterpiece. The film does a wonderful job at putting you directly into the mind of its protagonist and it's a shame that it wasn't nominated for Best Picture. 10/10

    Rachel Getting Married-I actually enjoyed this one; I don't know what IMDb voters were smoking. There were several well-directed scenes throughout the movie and it felt like a real wedding. Anne Hathaway and Rosemarie Dewitt were excellent. The movie could have cut down some of the musical numbers, though. 8/10

    Hanna-To answer your question, Brad, yes, you oversold this one completely. Don't get me wrong, this is a very good action film. It's also frustrating because it could have been so much better had we known about Blanchett and Bana's characters more. I also think that the film should have had a more convincing final twenty minutes. It's a good film, but not the fantastic one that it could have been. 7/10

  • Alex G

    Jackie Brown - By far Quentin Tarantino's most interesting (though not necessarily best) movie. The cast is amazing, giving some of the best performances in any of Quentin Tarantino's movies. Tarantino beautifully mirrors the style of blaxplotation films with this one. It may be a little long, but it's still really good. And if it's any consolation, it's Tarantino's worst film. Yeah, he's that good. A-

    Black Swan - I got this on Blu-ray and I was very eager to watch it. The second time was even better than the first viewing. Still, Natalie Portman's performance is one to remember forever. Aronofsky's direction was even better after I got to analyze it. Why didn't he win Best Director? Black Swan is now a modern classic in my eyes. A+ (rewatch)

  • Ron

    Iron Man 2 - The first hour or so of this movie is really great, it looked like it was going to surpass the first Iron Man. Robert Downey Jr. was great again, we had some nice action scenes and Mickey Rourke was a great villain. But then the film collapses and never recovers entirely. Rourke is almost gone from the movie and the whole Avengers sideplot wasn't interesting. It picked up some steam with the last action scene but it didn't get close to the first hour of this movie. I also thought the last fight with Rourke was dissapointingly short. Overall I did enjoy this movie, there was just about a half hour of this movie that could have been cut. 7/10

    Source Code: Best film I've seen so far this year. I thought the whole cast was great, but for me Gyllenhaal and Farmiga stood out. Gyllenhaal showed that he has the potential to be a leading man and Farmiga made the most of what could have been just a throwaway role. 9/10

    The Adjustment Bureau: Second favorite movie of the year so far. Great chemistry between Damon and Blunt, but overall the cast was great. Anthony Mackie could just become a really big star. And I personally feel that Michael Kelly should be more known than he is, again he is great in a supporting turn. The movie had me in the edge of my seat and I was pleased with the ending. 8/10

  • criterion10

    Limitless -- Overall, I found this very entertaining, despite my usual nitpicks. However, I absolutely HATED the sequences with that annoying camera (i.e. opening credits). I had been watching the film for 10 minutes and already felt like I was going to throw up. B-

    The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie -- Absolutely loved this film! So surreal, but great! The ending is hysterical. A+

    Unstoppable -- Similar to what I said on Limitless, very entertaining despite my usual nitpicks for a film like this. B-

    ...Planning to catch one or two more today....

  • al3x

    I too am planning on watching all of the Scream films next week. In preparation for this, I had a late 90s teen/horror nostalgia filled week. All rewatches:

    I Know What You Did Last Summer - 3/5 - As mentioned above, this holds up quite well. It's well constructed and although none of the acting is that impressive, Sarah Michelle Gellar does put in a good turn and her chase/death scene is by far the best part of the film.

    I Still Know What You Did Last Summer - 2/5 - This is pretty bad even in comparison to some of the deluge of slasher films that followed the original movie and the first Scream. The cast is uniformally poor and Jack Black's small role is ill-judged to say the least. No wonder Prinze Jr didn't even bother showing up for most of the film.

    Cruel Intentions - 3.5/5 - Phillipe still plays the role of the rich pretty-boy well now (The Lincoln Lawyer) and his acting ability had stepped up a few notches here from IKWYDLS. Gellar was again good and Reese Witherspoon was extremely likeable and cute. The plot is quite light in depth and the death scene at the end is way too convoluted but I still enjoyed it and the soundtrack is great.

    The Faculty - 4/5 - I loved this film when I was younger and was highly entertained again. The young cast are all good, particularly Wood, DuVall and Hartnett (who has never really lived up to the coolness of his role here). Whilst Janssen and Patrick clearly had great fun as the teachers. Rodriguez's direction is above what you'd expect from this type of film. Although the effects look very dated now, it's still a good take on the bodysnatchers theme and Kevin Williamson exhibits a lot of the wit and the nods to other films shown in his Scream screenplays.

    Teaching Mrs Tingle - 1.5/5 - This film and Cursed are the reasons why I can't get overly excited for Scream 4. Katie Holmes' back story is not well developed and therefore as the lead she is not likeable enough and it also largely wastes Helen Mirren. The direction by Williamson himself is poor, the storyline goes nowhere and I doubt I'll ever watch it again.

    The Craft - 2.5/5 - Although this was possibly the film that kick-started the teen horror genre in the 90s, which was followed by Scream cemeting its resurgence, it has not aged well. The effects look awful now and the direction and script are unispired. The acting isn't too bad but only Fairuza Balk really stands out in a role where she was allowed to fully let loose.

    First watches:

    Source Code - 3.5/5 - Entertaining but not quite as clever as I thought it would be. The three leads were all good but I wasn't sure about Jeffrey Wright who seemed way over the top for no reason. Overall, a decent first step into Hollywood for Duncan Jones and definitely a film I will watch again.

    Sucker Punch - 3/5 - Better than I was anticipating but not great. I found the whole film to be ridiculous but only half was ridiculous in a watchable way (the fight scenes), the other half was in terms of a ridiculously bad script. Snyder prooves himself a top level action director but a screenwriter he is clearly not. What still gives me optimism for Superman is that he's not written it.

    My Soul To Take - 2/5 - Wes Craven also prooves himself here as a director that shouldn't write. It's not badly made or acted and the production values seemed decent but the storyline is so un-original and cliched that there is little suspense throughout and in particular during the finale. Where you are just waiting for it to end for the last 20 minutes or so.

    • VMarsFTW

      I totally agree with your thoughts on "The Faculty"! Back when I was in middle school, that was my favorite movie. I loved it. I still have it on DVD and have been meaning to rewatch it lately. I always though DuVall did an amazing job in that movie.

  • justin casey

    faster- surprisingly good movie it wasn't along the lines of the film i watched later last night but it was still good although the part where driver acts like he's gonna shoot the preacher and he doesn't was preety laughable and i honestly believe if they had just cut out the blood this could've been PG-13 still enjoyable wish i could've caught it in theatres preety much if you are a fan of action or the rock which i am both (cena sucks) you will like this 7/10
    127 hours- this was a very inspirational film it basicly shows you that even in the face of definate disaster you have to keep on going because there is a way out even though i thought the amputation scene was very graphic and hard to watch i got into it because even though i knew the outcome i still wanted to see how it was captured on screen thought it was preety cool when they showed the real aron at the end after seeing this i want to read the book really bad 9/10

  • MajorFilmFan

    Best In Show- a friend of mine recomended I watch this film, and since I had some time on my hands with Spring Break, I decided to give it a try. Christopher Guest's mockumentary is EXTREMELY funny. A cast of insane characters and an unusual sense of humor make this film a DEFFINATE winner in my book. A+

  • VMarsFTW

    Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon- I had a mixed reaction to this film. On one hand, I was constantly stunned by the incredible action sequences, and the cinematography was simply gorgeous. However, the acting and story left much to be desired. The story especially bothered me as it simply had too much going on and is never really original in anyway. Basically, it was a good film, but it did not live up to my high expectations. B-

    Risky Business: I really loved this movie. I went in expecting a teen sex comedy but it ended up being a much more serious and meaningful movie than I expected. Both the leads gave good performances, it was well directed, and the music really stuck out to me as helping set the tone. I really liked this film and look forward to rewatching it. A

    I was hoping to see Hanna, especially after reading your review Brad, but I did not get to see it. I'll hopefully be able to see it next weekend or during my spring break in two weeks.

  • Mason Williamson

    Source Code: 7.5/10 - Although it was a good film, this one outright pissed me off. Throughout most of its running time, I was highly entertained and engaged in the story. However, it threw everything away in the last 20 minutes or so and resorted to action movie clichés. When Gyllenhaal asked 'Do you believe in fate?', I cringed, as I did at the excessive repeat of 'Everything's gonna be okay'. It's still the best film I've seen this year, but that's not saying anything at all.

    Memento: 9.5/10 - I had been hearing about this film for a long time, but just finally got around to seeing it this week. It's an excellent piece of film noir, with the twists constantly surprising. The dialouge is sharp and the performances are great. Unfortunately, it isn't quite a perfect film, as it does feel a tad gimmicky at times, but if you can look past that, it's well worth watching.

    Barton Fink: 10/10 - Here's the real winner of the week. I've only ever given 13 films a 10/10 in my life, and this one is the latest entry into that list. This is, in my opinion, easily the Coen brothers' best film, and an underrated classic. Granted, it benefits from repeat viewings, as the first time I saw it I was a little bit confused. The next day, however, I watched it again and absolutely adored it. The performances are fantastic, with John Goodman giving one of the greatest supporting roles I've ever seen. The writing and direction are amazing, and the picture looks beautiful. On top of being open to analysis and discussion, seeing as it ambiguously deals with important and complex themes, it is extraordinarily entertaining, especially the final 20 minutes. It's very rare that a film can get me gaping at the screen, but this one accomplished that feat multiple times. A truly overlooked masterpiece.

    Raising Arizona: 7.5/10 - A funny, entertaining film. Nothing more, nothing less.

  • The Dead Burger

    For the record, regardless of whether or not you oversold Hanna (I don't think you did, it's incredible), I would much rather see your personal opinion of the movie than have you try to distance yourself from it and give a less enthusiastic, "objective" kind of review.

    • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

      Yeah, my biggest concern is making sure I get that "personal opinion" vibe in there, so you guys know where I'm coming from. I guess it's more of a question regarding my writing skills rather than whether you agree with my opinion. I always want to make sure you guys can read my reviews and get the overall feeling of where I'm coming from as much as my opinion on why I like or dislike a movie.

      Your comment certainly helps in that regard.

      • Jack

        Off topic, but who is that in your profile pic?

      • Tom Beet

        I would guess this is Warren Beatty in early days, maybe in Bonnie and Clyde.

      • Large

        Isn't that Jean Paul Belmondo in Breathless?

      • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/ Brad Brevet

        Yes, Large it is, and sorry Jack, I didn't see your comment until now.

  • Mari S

    It's been ages since I last shared in this post but here goes.

    Water for Elephants - B
    A very emotional story that made me so angry and sad at times. Christoph Waltz really knows how to portray a man that is insecurely evil and scary to the core. I knew nothing of the story before going in so it took me by surprise. Again we see that there's more to Pattinson than a teen vamp and a pretty boy.

    Manderlay - B+
    I had the chance to see this in a movie theater so naturally I wanted to revisit a film from a director that has become a favorite. There's just something about Dogville and this movie that appeals to me. The story gets somehow more meaning when the surroundings are so bare and virtually non-existing. I can't wait for Wasington, if it's still coming together one day.

    Black Swan - A+
    Incredible. Everything has already been said so I'll leave it at that.

    The Adjustment Bureau - B-
    Great chemistry between the leads but somewhere after two thirds I found myself to be a bit overwhelmed by the story and all the turns it took.

    Meek's Cutoff - C
    What was cut off was the ending and the story. Boy I wish I had read your review before seeing this...

    • m1

      Glad to hear that you enjoyed Water for Elephants. I can't wait to see it.

  • Vince (Not Vance)

    I didn't get to see Hanna like I had planned to. I did check out...

    Unknown- The film is mediocre for the first hour & a half, with Bruno Ganz & Liam Neeson being the only things remotely interesting about the whole ordeal. Then the film decides to throw a twist on you that's so dumb, so half-baked and so completely retarded that I literally stopped caring about anything until the credits began. Except for the twist and January Jones' barely competent acting, nothing about this film is offensively bad. Then again nothing in this film is very entertaining either. C- (2/5)

    I also started watching Archer (not a film, but still), which is by far the funniest show on television. Just about everything about that show is amazing- pitch-perfect casting, bawdy but smart dialogue & lovable (or easy to hate) characters. It's brilliant. Based on what I've seen, it's an A+

  • Steve J

    Kind of A Funny Story--Had it's heart in the right place, but just average.

    Hanna--Great movie, the missing parts I think make the movie more interesting.

    Faster--What an odd sub story of "Killer". The rest was good enough, but the background of the hit man was just too weird.

  • Tom Beet

    Here comes what I watched last week, there were many animation films.

    Brazil (1984) 4/5
    One of the most imaginative picture. I usually don't like sci-fi movie, but i really enjoyed this one. Quirky dialogue, visually stunning, incredible concept. The ending "It is just a dream" that haunted me long after watching this. (still haven't decided if the ending is good or not though).

    Team America: World Police (2004) 3/5
    Fun as hell. I don't feel much offensive as I expected. The humor is a bit "gross", but it has good dialogue and entertains you all the way through.

    FightClub (1999), *second viewing 4/5
    The second time I watched it, it still feels fresh, funny and stylish. There are plenty of good acting here. Don't have to say much as everyone knows how good it is. ^ ^

    The Place Promised in Our Early Days (2004) 3/5
    Get a chance to see it at last. What can I say? Beautiful animation. The story is deep and novelty. Everyone said Makoto Shinkai is one of the new-Hayao in anime, maybe they're right, not my cup of tea though.

    Hoodwinked (2005) 3.5/5
    Now this movie makes me thinking a lot. I found it fresh, original and innovative in a way that differentiate itself with other CGI movies. The visual is not beautiful, but its visual fits to the movie, and with how the low-budget they had, it is amazing. That makes me wonder why this movie was critically failure and many people seems to hate it. And I absolutlely love it. Everyone have their own taste I suppose. Definitely watch it again someday.

    Rango (2011) *second viewing 3.5/5
    Still love it after second viewing, I found many more references to other movies in this viewing and very excited about that.

    Garden State (2004) 3.5/5
    I decided to watch this after reading "Ranking Natalie Portman's films" in this blog. I glad I did. The movie is very sweet. I felt very warm inside after the film ends. Thanks Brad.

    5 Centimeters Per Second (2007) 3/5
    It feels like you read a whole novel with the visually motion popping in your head. I would say it's like "Chungking Express" in animation.

    Millennium Actress (2001) *second viewing 3.5/5
    This is one rare movie that after I watch it second time, I feel more appreciate to it. It still blew me away. I can feel love of cinema of Satoshi Koi in every scene of the film, and I feel that love constantly in every movies he made. He is (was) my legend. Ever.

    Incendies (2010) 4/5
    Last film I saw this week (yesterday) was Incendies. I just like "WOW" in the end of the movie. It keeps me engage and hits me hard with several 'twists'. Strongly recommend for people who has not seen it. Worth watching!

    Movies I plan to see this week (hopefully): Pocession (1980), Alice (1988), Tokyo Godfather (2003), The Vanishing (1987)...

    Yeah, I want to see Hanna also. I love Joe Wright, Saoirse Ronan. I enjoy David Lynch's style and I like the movie concept. The only proplem is it's not screening in my country until... i don't know, so I have to wait to watch it.

  • Chris138

    Meet Joe Black - An uneven film, yet I still enjoyed it. I thought Anthony Hopkins was excellent with a pretty wonderful score by Thomas Newman. I've read that a lot of complaints with the film were due to the length and pace of the film, which I suppose it's true that it is a bit long, but that didn't bother me quite as much. Still, the film is very well made and explores some interesting themes such as love, family, life, death and the meaning of one's existence. 3.5/5

    The Story of G.I. Joe - A pretty gritty portrayal of war considering the time it was made, at times even reminiscent of All Quiet on the Western Front. Overall it's good but I don't consider it to be among my favorite war movies. 3/5

    Amistad - A very good film with an even better ensemble. Everyone is excellent in their roles, but I thought Anthony Hopkins completely stole the show as John Quincy Adams, and I think that 10 minute monologue in the courtroom at the end of the film pretty much sealed the deal for an Oscar nomination. It's pretty unforgettable. 4/5

    Gallipoli - A very effective and strong anti-war film with a very young Mel Gibson. As is the case with just about any Peter Weir film, it is very nice to look at and well directed. One of my favorites from him. 4.5/5

    Fantastic Mr. Fox - A fun and witty animated movie. It has all kinds of trademarks that are common in Wes Anderson's films throughout, and a good score by Alexandre Desplat. 4/5

  • Alana

    "Amarcord" - a different kind of beast comparing to movies of hollywood. Pleasant surprise. believe it or not reminded me of my childhood just a little :-)

    "XXY" - very much original and alive. It hurts to see people so unacceptable of anyone that don't fit their "bill".

    "Possession" 2009 - Could've been quite an entertaining movie, but fails badly to do so.

    "Last Night" - didn't expect much from this one and it didn't fail my expectations. Pleasant enough watch on the rainy day.

    "Thinning the Herd" and "Il Vestito" - shorts movies by Rie Rusmussen. I enjoyed both, especially Thinning the heard.

    "Angel-A" - re-watch - simply love this movie.

    "The Chameleon" - I thought Ellen Barkin was fabulious in this one. Marc-André Grondin though, i think, was miscast.

    "The Dilemma" - this movie should've never been made.

    "The Fall" - i can't believe i've not seen it earlier. Beautiful movie, a little girl was so natural as if she wasn't acting at all.

    "I am Love" - Tilda Swinton is one of the best in my book and i'll see any movie with her. This was great movie.

  • http://devilishpictures.com MWHollywood85

    Strangers on a Train (1951) - First viewing
    This is an overlooked Hitchcock thriller in the sense that it doesn't hold the cache of a Notorious or a Rear Window. Nonetheless it is still an example of his mastery. Like pretty much all of his works this one is a taught thriller that keeps winding. My only qualm is the casting of Farley Granger. He comes across like a perpetutal deer in the headlights who is never close to being in control of the situation. So really he may in fact be perfectly cast. For me though he is too similar to his character in Rope. Robert Walker is perfect as he cranks up the creepy factor as the film goes on. A fantastic thriller that I highly recommend.

    True Lies (1994)
    I have seen this many times on TV (seems like A&E plays it every weekend) but I still marvel at how Cameron pokes fun at the action genre while still producing a fantastic action movie. He also seems to inspire the best out of the ex-Governer.

    Return of the Jedi (1983)
    I have seen the Star Wars films sooooo many times and I love them like everyone else (except those new ones). But I havent seen them since Lucas dusted them off and desecrated them. I saw some footage that looked terribly out of place and looked past it as it was all filler. But then at the end I was appauled to see that Sebastian Shaw had been replaced by Hayden Cristiansen! Just brutal. The Family Guy Star Wars episodes have sort of tainted them a bit for me as well. I had a couple chuckles at the Emporer's 'something, something dark side' dialogue.

  • Pixarian

    A Single Man - A
    Breathtaking...the cinematography was absolutely gorgeous as well. Collin Firth, bravo.

    An Education - A-
    Jenny and David's relationship was incredible to watch, despite what I thought was an abrupt ending.

    Inglourious Basterds - A+
    WOWZA! Loved every minute of it! Entertaining to say the least. Christoph Waltz -- great!

    Exit Through the Gift Shop - B+

    The Hurt Locker - C+
    Forgive me for not caring much for this.

    Babies - C-
    Cute. That's it...but isn't that all it really is supposed to be?

    Fantastic Mr. Fox - A

    Toy Story 3 - A+
    Still the best animated film of 2010, possibly the decade.

    • m1

      Oh, catching up on 2009's contenders, are we? Interesting thoughts, though I disagree with you vastly on The Hurt Locker and think you rated A Single Man too highly.

    • Winchester

      @ Pixarian - You need not ask for forgiveness!!

      For what it's worth I'm with you regarding The Hurt Locker. I was astonished by how mundane it was when I finally got a couple of months back.

      Especially after all the raves about it. It was not by any means a bad film..........but nothing truly special either for me.

  • Travis

    Wonder Boys - A wonderful almost Ghost World-ish film. Michael Douglas, Tobey Maguire are quite good, hopefully the Guillermo Del Toro produced horror film this year is a comeback for Katie Holmes as she is an underrated actress.B+

    Hannah and Her Sisters - As I explore his filmography further, I just fall in love with Woody Allen more and more. Although very different, I would compare this to Crimes and Misdemeanors in tone, pacing, interweaving of stories. I thought the entire cast was great (expecially Dianne Wiest. A

    Withnail & I - Not often do I get completely into a movie, almost feel like everything is happening in front of me instead of on a tv screen. This was probably helped by the fact I hadn't seen the cast in anything previously (except Richard Griffiths who like in Wonder Boys is exceptional as an older creepy yet loveable homosexual male), and that they were all strong, the screenplay, direction feel natural. I expect repeat viewings to only help this film. A

    Mr. Brooks - The IMDb rating gave me high hopes, but this was a promising thriller which was poorly executed. I like that everything isn't tied up in a little bow, but there are many issues like plot, clarity and focus. C

    Nixon - I watched the 3 1/2 hour directors cut, but this story almost needed the Carlos treatment with a three part mini-series, as this densely packed film still felt like the events were a little too condensed. Oliver Stone, his co-writers clearly researched the topic heavily, as usual Stone is able to make one of America's most hated Presidents human while still villifying his actions. The cast is strong top to bottom, particularly Anthony Hopkins who surprised me, even though he only slightly resembles Nixon in look and sound.

    Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? - Somehow this was my first Elizabeth Taylor film, Richard Burton and her give blistering performances. The cinematography, simple score, the at times darkly humorous screenplay and Nichols' direction are all very good. There are lulls in the film when both Burton and Taylor aren't on screen together, but they are at least used to set up later plot points.A

    Your Friends & Neighbours - I went in cautiously optimistic as dark comedy is possibly my favorite sub-genre, but also one of the more seemingly difficult genres for those outside the Coen brothers and Kubrick to master. In the end I was quite surprised as Neil LaBute was able to write, direct a Todd Solondz-like film where characters who look and act like real, yet messed up human beings. Ben Stiller, Aaron Eckhart, Catherine Keener are all good, but are outshone by Jason Patric who is quite good as the most messed up of them all. A-