Recently Watched Films 2016

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Dan Warburton
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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

Post by Dan Warburton »

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François Ozon, Jeune et jolie, 2013

I just realised I didn't write this one up at the time (we saw it a month or so ago) - an oversight on my part, as it is (before you ask again, Mark ;) ) without doubt one of the finest films I've seen all year. Marine Vacth - no, I don't know how to pronounce it either - is absolutely awesome: this is a performance that ranks alongside anything by the young Deneuve or Binoche. And everything about the film is on the same high level: the story (which I won't spoil for you), the cinematography, the lot. Do yourselves a favour.
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Lao Tsu Ben
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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

Post by Lao Tsu Ben »

Funny, I thought it had no interest whatsoever, and certainly not the trite psychology. But you and Armond (who is regrettably a fan of Ozon) disagree on that. There is really no story to spoil since there is none beyond what is contained in a simple synopsis. As for Marina Vacth, what does she do besides pouting in a forlorn way during the whole film? Her character is so empty (not forgetting that's precisely the point of the film).
I watched it at a friend's, and we watched Frances Ha just after, which is the American idea of a French film gone wrong, one of those evenings where we seem to be looking for punishment, or rather punishment is out to get us, god knows why.
Ok, maybe I'm exaggerating and I sound needlessly harsh but I strongly disliked the film ;)

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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

Post by Dan Warburton »

Lao Tsu Ben wrote:Funny, I thought it had no interest whatsoever, and certainly not the trite psychology. But you and Armond (who is regrettably a fan of Ozon) disagree on that. There is really no story to spoil since there is none beyond what is contained in a simple synopsis. As for Marina Vacth, what does she do besides pouting in a forlorn way during the whole film? Her character is so empty (not forgetting that's precisely the point of the film).
I watched it at a friend's, and we watched Frances Ha just after, which is the American idea of a French film gone wrong, one of those evenings where we seem to be looking for punishment, or rather punishment is out to get us, god knows why.
Ok, maybe I'm exaggerating and I sound needlessly harsh but I strongly disliked the film ;)
Not at all, I think it's great to find something we disagree on! Nice to see you back, Ben.. what else have you been watching these days? Oddly enough, I'm not as much of an Armond fan as you are, but you could have linked his (admittedly rather slight) review for the perusal of the half dozen folks who read this thread regularly :D http://www.out.com/entertainment/armond ... nt-classic
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jon abbey
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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

Post by jon abbey »

the Phil Freeman of film, I hope to never read anything else by him ever. :D

Lao Tsu Ben
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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

Post by Lao Tsu Ben »

I know that Dan, I'm unflinching in my support for Armond even if frequently disagree with him, not to mention that he's often puzzling (an understatement). The fact that he writes now for such a rag as the National Review makes him even more endearing in a weird, skewed way.
Thanks for the welcome, as always. The last films I enjoyed? I was surprised to find Reality by Quentin Dupieux more interesting than I expected. It's more and also different than a simple Bunuel/Lynch rip-off. On another hand, the last Coen bros left me very cold - dispensable isn't near enough to describe it in my opinion.
I have plenty of films waiting for a fair assessment on my hard drive so if I have time :D
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Piano Mouth
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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

Post by Piano Mouth »

I have plenty of films waiting for a fair assessment on my hard drive so if I have time :D
You are not alone. I have amassed more films than I have watched. It's hard to decide which ones to watch first, whether or not to rewatch certain ones before or after watching movies that I got from karagarga as featured torrents because my ratio was low...

Lao Tsu Ben
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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

Post by Lao Tsu Ben »

jon abbey wrote:the Phil Freeman of film, I hope to never read anything else by him ever. :D
You should have a look at this essays for Criterion. Perhaps it will make your opinion of him somewhat fairer.

Dan Warburton
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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

Post by Dan Warburton »

Lao Tsu Ben wrote:
jon abbey wrote:the Phil Freeman of film, I hope to never read anything else by him ever. :D
You should have a look at this essays for Criterion. Perhaps it will make your opinion of him somewhat fairer.
Ha, I'd say there's about as much chance of Jon Abbey doing that as there is of him releasing a saxophone quartet on Erstwhile :lol:
On the subject of Phil "Great Man Theory" Freeman, my heart sank when I saw that he had been the journalist entrusted with the rare delicate mission of interviewing Cecil Taylor for The Wire (was there nobody else they could call upon in New York? Holy shit..). Talk about a missed opportunity. I can't say my life is any richer for knowing what Cecil's favourite piano is, or what he thinks of rock drummers or Miles Davis. (Presumably Freeman, self-confessed Metal lover, didn't dare challenge the old geezer.. Sigh) But then again, I rarely open The Wire any more, and when I do I have this horrible feeling of having read it somewhere before. Anyway, if you can put up with the hideous look of the webpage, here's a blast from the past for you Phil-istines
http://paristransatlantic.com/magazine/ ... ext.html#6 - I'd prefer to spend what time I have left watching something as truly great as

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Jon Amiel, The Singing Detective, 1986
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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

Post by Lao Tsu Ben »

I didn't know him and he sounds like a real bore.
This is the kind of music critic which really dispirits me.
We should make a thread about our favourite music writers or critics - barring a certain DW. But perhaps there was already one.

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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

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Dan Warburton wrote:Image

François Ozon, Jeune et jolie, 2013

I just realised I didn't write this one up at the time (we saw it a month or so ago) - an oversight on my part, as it is (before you ask again, Mark ;) ) without doubt one of the finest films I've seen all year. Marine Vacth - no, I don't know how to pronounce it either - is absolutely awesome: this is a performance that ranks alongside anything by the young Deneuve or Binoche. And everything about the film is on the same high level: the story (which I won't spoil for you), the cinematography, the lot. Do yourselves a favour.
She is def jolie.
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jon abbey
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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

Post by jon abbey »

Lao Tsu Ben wrote:I didn't know him and he sounds like a real bore.
This is the kind of music critic which really dispirits me.
all words I'd also apply to your boy Armond, who like I said I hope to never read again after reading his drivel in the New York Press for years on end. I honestly don't care about (the vast majority of) film much, so there's even less reason for me to further explore a writer I've already been annoyed by so often.

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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

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Gaspar Noé, Love, 2015

I read somewhere that Gaspar Noé's script was "just seven pages long!", as if that's something we ought to be impressed by. What a shame the film wasn't just seven minutes long instead of 129. Enter The Void was bad enough, and an hour too long to boot, and I should have had more sense than to try again, but, encouraged to do so by a good friend of mine who knows the director well and who raved about it, I've just sat through Love for a second time. In boring old 2D I'm afraid, so I didn't experience the 3D-cumshot, which seems to be the only thing anyone finds to talk about.
Well, umm, let's see, there are a few pretty shots of the Buttes Chaumont - btw that's the park Monica Bellucci is picnicking in at the end (or beginning, depending on which way you look at it) of Irreversible - and it was good to listen to Funkadelic's "Maggot Brain" for the first time in a while, but the sex scenes it accompanied were neither erotic nor pornographic (I'm thinking here of the distinction drawn between the two in that old 1967 Susan Sontag essay, "The Pornographic Imagination", but even that is due for some strategic reappraisal now, it seems http://www.on-verge.org/essays/rethinki ... agination/), but just, well.. boring. In these days of immediately accessible online porn, a blowjob, half a dozen handjobs and a slowmotion money shot is hardly shocking anymore; if Noé deliberately set out to shock in his earlier films (a noble tradition, and one that many a director not only here in France has aspired to, from Debord to Despentes), I'm afraid he doesn't anymore. I'd say the novelty wore off about half an hour into Enter The Void, since when he's been drifting about in the upper atmosphere looking down on himself (pun intentional?).
The amateur acting here is painfully bad but I think that can be blamed on the script, which is even worse. Indeed, the only thing that is truly shocking here is how utterly embarrassingly awful the dialogue is. Unless, that is, Noé is deliberately setting out to take the piss out of himself - naming the kid Gaspar and the ex-boyfriend Noé might be signs of that, though I suspect it's more likely to be a sign of megalomania rather than self-deprecation.
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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

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Paul Morrissey, Flesh for Frankenstein, 1973

"To know death, Otto, you have to fuck life... in the gall bladder!" Tonino Guerra apparently helped on the script, but wisely chose to remain uncredited - I wonder if he penned that line :lol: Wow. This is supposed to be available in 3D, too. Anybody out there a fan? Can't say I am, though I can understand its cult status..
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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

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Claude Sautet, Classe tous risques, 1960

Poor old Marcel Dalio always ends up being verbally or physically abused (and/or whacked). And Ventura is at his very best here. Fine movie - I seem to remember Radu Malfatti saying he liked this one, not that that has anything to do with anything much :)
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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

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Raoul Ruiz, Zig-Zag Le jeu d'oie, 1980

Fascinating short, available on YouTube here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TO9a3461ayk (but without subtitles - go to KG for those) and discussed at length here http://www.thecinetourist.net/maps-in-f ... -ruiz-1980. A decent DVD release would be nice, but we'll just have to dream about that for the time being.
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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

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F FOR FAKE (1974) – Orson Welles

Welles' last complete film as director, sometimes called a 'film essay' because it resists categorization, starting off as a documentary but slyly slipping into subtle and then not so subtle mockumentary.

Welles was editing a television documentary on the notorious art forger Elmyr de Hory. At the time of the filming, Clifford Irving was writing a book about de Hory, and he appeared in some of the documentary footage. While Welles was working on the project, Irving was exposed as having faked a biography of
Howard Hughes, based on phony interviews. (He did 17 months in prison for the fraud.) So the author of a book about a fake was himself a fake. Welles expanded the project to deal with fakery in the arts; the arts as fakery (including his own fake alien invasion on radio, peppered with wonderfully campy silent film footage, etc.); an heroic (or is it mock-heroic?) soliloquy on the Chartres Cathedral and the impermanence of all art, both real and forged; and a final obviously phony art story involving the Croatian actress Oja Kodar (Welles' last companion), Pablo Picasso, and forgeries.

The film has a wide and free palette of editing techniques, unusually so for Welles (and the period), fast cuts, fanciful splices, rapid repetitions, etc.

Will watch it again. Like a good magic trick, it left me feeling I missed something central, and I'm curious to know what was real and what wasn't.
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walto
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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

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Dan Warburton wrote:Image

Paul Morrissey, Flesh for Frankenstein, 1973

"To know death, Otto, you have to fuck life... in the gall bladder!" Tonino Guerra apparently helped on the script, but wisely chose to remain uncredited - I wonder if he penned that line :lol: Wow. This is supposed to be available in 3D, too. Anybody out there a fan? Can't say I am, though I can understand its cult status..
I'm definitely a fan of Blood for Dracula. Never liked this one too much, though.
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Dan Warburton
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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

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Takashi Miike, As The Gods Will, 2014

I always thought those paw-wagging cats were pretty scary - sorry, Chris Marker - and wait till you see this one in action. It's a gory, fun death game mangadventure, but I wouldn't look for any deep meaning in it if I were you (in fact, it runs out of steam rather disappointingly: after the first three games the skateboarding giant polar bear "who's telling lies" Q&A falls a bit flat, and the ending is decidedly limp): just enjoy the filming - love the blood-red marbles in the opening scene. Daruma ga Koronda!
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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

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Maurice Pialat, Loulou, 1980

No wonder Gérard Depardieu bust the bed while he was bouncing around on top of Isabelle Huppert (poor little thing, she looks as fragile as a porcelain kitten) - but despite the apparent physical mismatch, Huppert and Depardieu make a great couple, and play well off each other throughout. So what's it about? Well, Gégé is basically a (reasonably) likeable good-for-nothing layabout, and Huppert's Nelly his recently discovered "fiancée" (they get together after one of her frequent bust-ups with partner / boss Guy Marchand), working in something resembling advertising or something similarly well-paid, who pays all his bills in exchange for.. the legendary Depardieu penis (which moviegoers throughout the world, not to mention several air hostesses, have seen with their own eyes). I won't spoil the story, other than to say that they're still together at the end of the film (just), because rather like summarising the plot of a Rohmer film ("huh, is that all?"). Actually, I find the two directors have much in common, in the sense that the mechanics of filmmaking - sets, costumes, lighting, camera movements, editing - are so effortlessly mastered you don't even notice them. I love the little accidents Pialat leaves in - if accidents they are - Huppert tripping up crossing the street, or suffering a coughing fit while she eats her oysters, and the fight scenes are absolutely terrific.
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Re: Recently Watched Films 2016

Post by Dan Warburton »

SqDanceCallingSteve wrote:an heroic (or is it mock-heroic?) soliloquy on the Chartres Cathedral
I suspect he really means what he says here (for once!) - have you seen the series Around The World With Orson Welles? Similar rhetoric.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Around_th ... son_Welles
Thanks for reminding me to return to this one, haven't seen it in a while
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