Escape from Elba
Exiles of the New York Times
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Author Topic: Movies  (Read 40691 times)
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madupont
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« Reply #2625 on: November 18, 2007, 10:01:56 AM »

Norman Mailer, Unbound and on Film: Revisiting His Bigger-Than-Life Selves

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/20/movies/20norm.html?pagewanted=1
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jbottle
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« Reply #2626 on: November 19, 2007, 09:36:19 PM »

So, biggest box-office flop of the year is "Lions for Lambs," they can SAY it cost $35M to make, but wait until tax time come around.

I noticed that the Dennis Quaid Presidential Assassination one looks very good nestled into it's CAN RIGHT NOW.

I'm guessing sneakyfarting into a theater near you in Feb.
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jbottle
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« Reply #2627 on: November 19, 2007, 09:54:00 PM »

Called it (when do I get to be studio boss)?:

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0443274/releaseinfo
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barton
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« Reply #2628 on: November 20, 2007, 01:06:34 PM »

Coen fans -- anyone see the Nov. 11 issue of the NYT Sunday magazine?  Really weird fashion section, featuring actors from Coen films posed in scenarios derived from the films and an all-too-brief article attached, talking with the brothers about NCfOM.  The Jon Polito picture has a mistaken attribution regarding The Big Lebowski cast -- identifying David Thewlis as playing the nihilist role in fact played by Peter Stormare.  Thewlis was the giggling video artist friend of Maud's, IIRC.
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"History doesn't repeat itself, but it often rhymes."
oilcanboyd23
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« Reply #2629 on: November 20, 2007, 01:39:59 PM »

Thewlis was the giggling video artist friend of Maud's, IIRC.

Knox Harrington - the video artist.
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harrie
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« Reply #2630 on: November 20, 2007, 05:57:46 PM »

Today was Bloody Tuesday, movie-wise -- saw Last King of Scotland and A History of Violence.   Both had stomach-turning moments (at least for a sissy like me), but both were very good.  I'm not sure about excellent, will have to think about that more.

Who was excellent, though -- Forrest Whitaker as Idi Amin. Last King of Scotland  kept me transfixed, not because I was all that sucked into the story or anything, but mostly because I was aghast.  I remember the real Idi Amin and the associated news stories, bad jokes, etc. and so knew what I would be getting.  Still, actually seeing body after often-mutilated body fall, slightly surreal music/dance scenes and the occasional close-up torture was, uh...a little shocking, yet very well done. 

But it struck me while watching that I didn't experience the usual "Oh, it's Actory XYZ playing real historical figure Dictator PQR."  I totally bought Whitaker as Amin and never once thought about the acting going on; he completely personified the guy, IMO anyway. 

A History of Violence, I am more lukewarm about that.  Performances were good -- especially William Hurt, whom I usually hate, I actually thought he was excellent in his part.  Ed Harris, reliable as usual, and Viggo M. was even okay.  I never thought of him as much of a real actor, basically knowing him from the LOTR and not much else. 

But the AHoV storyline itself kind of underwhelmed me, and I have the feeling I missed something while actually doing some work.  So if anyone wants to pitch in... Possibly spoiler-ish even if this movie's not exactly shiny new -- Viggo had a secret (and violent!) past with these people, okay. But I missed the part where you find out why they decided to find and harrass him. Did he have something of theirs?  Were they bored? 

And oh yeah -- the most important thing I found out today was don't try to eat your lunch during the last 20 minutes of Last King of Scotland.
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oilcanboyd23
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« Reply #2631 on: November 20, 2007, 08:47:54 PM »

But the AHoV storyline itself kind of underwhelmed me, and I have the feeling I missed something while actually doing some work.  So if anyone wants to pitch in... Possibly spoiler-ish even if this movie's not exactly shiny new -- Viggo had a secret (and violent!) past with these people, okay. But I missed the part where you find out why they decided to find and harrass him. Did he have something of theirs?  Were they bored? 

"A History of Violence" *** SPOILER ***

I think he killed one of the Philly mafia guys and gashed Ed Harris' eye several years before the movie starts, and then high-tailed it out of Philly and disappeared for years before making a blip on the national news shows by saving the people in the diner from the random bad guys in the beginning of the movie.  The Philly mafia guys probably saw him on TV and said hey, look, it's that so-and-so, let's go get him for what he did to us a few years ago, etc.
« Last Edit: November 20, 2007, 08:50:39 PM by oilcanboyd23 » Logged
harrie
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« Reply #2632 on: November 20, 2007, 09:25:25 PM »

Thanks, oilcan.   I knew I had to have missed something, and I did find it about 10 or so minutes in.  Much, much better.
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jbottle
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« Reply #2633 on: November 20, 2007, 09:38:48 PM »

...along with 4-8 others?
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harrie
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« Reply #2634 on: November 20, 2007, 09:49:08 PM »

You mean I -- I missed 4-8 other things?? Egads!
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madupont
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« Reply #2635 on: November 21, 2007, 12:33:06 AM »

Barton


 
Coen fans -- anyone see the Nov. 11 issue of the NYT Sunday magazine?  Really weird fashion section, featuring actors from Coen films posed in scenarios derived from the films and an all-too-brief article attached, talking with the brothers about NCfOM.  The Jon Polito picture has a mistaken attribution regarding The Big Lebowski cast -- identifying David Thewlis as playing the nihilist role in fact played by Peter Stormare.  Thewlis was the giggling video artist friend of Maud's, IIRC.

 

Ethan nodded. “ ‘No Country’ was kind of like a genre thing, but in a genre thing the characters end up differently,” he said. “ ‘No Country’ is perverse. And we always like something perverse.”
Understatement of the  year.
 
I mean, this is quite. "Javier Bardem: Tom Ford shirt and three-piece suit.... "
 
This kind of thing happens because Tom Ford sells very big in Texas. I vaguely remember hunting something down myself last Xmas. If this is what you mean by "the really weird fashion section"; if however you are referring to the slides, I am at a loss, something about my flash has been giving me a pain in the pan since trying to download Norman Mailer. But as soon as I get that settled,plus turkey,cranberges,sweet potato pie,etc. I am looking forward to it. I know that my definite impression was wardrobe is buying only clothes that you definitely do not want to buy at the cost of living today. But, New Yorkers have a sense of humor, dress under $2000,bag:could be anywhere from $398 gaud to 6K for a name.   One day recently, I caught myself dressing like Joan Didion for about the last year; does this have anything to do with being widowed right on schedule? My only regret is that he took all the surgical scrubs with him; best clothes you can cook in, believe me.
 
What I really regret...Attention:oilcanboyd23, is that I was going to watch The Lives of Others, last night,and then discovered the two Edie Beales had started Gray Gardens (Maysles) ahead of me, which is alright because I saw it before and I just wanted to compare how I would take it now, since Dzimas mentioned it has become an item again.



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madupont
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« Reply #2636 on: November 21, 2007, 02:00:23 AM »

Harrie!  I feel the same way about Forest Whitaker because he did this little trick when playing in Clint Eastwood's, Bird, although looking not a whit like Charlie Parker ( and there's no way he could ),he Became.

Ever since The Crying Game, he has had the opportunity to play several contract killers/hit men, and plays them very well,scare the be jebus out of you.

But, I took in The Last King of Scotland,with the writer in mind; after reading a very peculiar article about his writing purpose in The New Yorker, and laughing myself silly through his other masterpiece,The Queen. Peter Morgan likes to make historical adjustments, so that you get the point.  The point that I got after comparison of what he did in the writing of this movie, compared to the truth, is how to tell the difference.
That quirky spoiled little doctor played by James McAvoy was an idiot and if he has to represent the entire Western world, so be it.  Mr. Morgan as screen writer was kind enough as a Brit not to tell us the whole truth about ourselves but, if we figure it out in time, it is likely to make us very angry about what we've been going through recently.  Do you recall those little scenes with the CIA man showing up occasionally, crossing the street, dropping off bundles of money? One of the reasons, by the end of the film, and you are realizing more than you realized up front, that you are seeing people waiting around for help in the direst,filthiest circumstances while the Dictator is able to loan some of that money back when politicians in the West need money to run a campaign. One hand washes the other.

Okay, now we get to part two: A History of Violence. I, too, usually hate William Hurt, who more than ever looks like what they have him playing, blown up to full Big ....... which means the story doesn't jibe.

"Viggo M. was even okay.  I never thought of him as much of a real actor, basically knowing him from (?)...

Okay, so here's where I improvise because basically I know him from the front row of Witness, in Lancaster county.  I immediately thought Kelly McGillis' Rachel is making a big mistake.  I simply loved Viggo (lot of good that will do me). So years went by, and I have to live with it, the whole nine yards, day in and day out, this is home so I know the story better than you may ever imagine. I know the places of every inch of that footage. Let's say Viggo was not an actor and that Harry is hiding out from something else, kind of like Harrison staying out of Philly and falling head over heels for Rachel(Kelly), dancing in the barn and what not, spying on her accidentally while she bathes with a sponge in a basin by oil-lamp-light.  We do that kind of thing quite often around here, if you live on a farm. Lights Out, no warning, which is why the Amish avoid electricity that they don't make themselves.

My theory is Viggo left Lancaster and migrated to Indiana which is what the Amish usually do when they get past Ohio; it takes forever but, if he really wanted to hide out, he could do what a nice Amisher would do, run a hamburger joint in a small town and make love to his wife on the staircase when the kids aren't around. Would she know the difference? Would she only begin to sense he has "a history" after weird folks start showing up and he starts acting different? Is she scared? Nah, and he just gets in the car and drives the turnpike to Philadelphia like another problem has to be taken care of so, let's get it over with.

This is where the Joey Cusack problem gets unreal.  I accept all the other stuff, the violent bear it away; if he hadn't come from Lancaster, Viggo could have been your average returned veteran of overkill who knows exactly how it is done. Snap to!

But the whole cockamamie story about mafia-kill, etc. doesn't make sense. The Mafia in Philly are not Polish. I get exasperated at Ed Harris, like he is a left over from previous Russell Crowe as an intellectual who perceives an illusionary Harris as a real CIA man; and, now, Harris is into it, believing he is a fugg'd-up undercover man on the take who should have stopped drinking when he was Jackson Pollock. There are five points on the Mafia star or points of the compass, each with a family, and the families at different points fight with each other over territory, then you find bodies in cars, if not on the sidewalk like in New York. In Philly, it was in the car, "Mafia Don Assassinated". Believe me they didn't send Joey Cusack to do the job.

At least, we know that when Forest Whitaker is a hired killer or a madman with delusions of grandeur exercised, that he really comes from Texas. With Viggo, it's hard to tell; Danish? With coffee, and give me a little sugar.
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barton
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« Reply #2637 on: November 21, 2007, 10:42:36 AM »

I thought HoV was pretty good, even if Hurt's accent was a bit odd.  The sex scene on the stairs was raw and interesting.

Catching up on my Philip Dick story-based films, just saw "Next," -- better than I expected, managing to give you a romance, an action film, and some paranormal conundrums to think about, with a hero (Nic Cage) who is precognitive, but usually only by two minutes.  This works well for him in Las Vegas, where he does a magic act and plays blackjack with enough restraint to keep the ballpeen guys off him.   I thought Cage and the supercute Biehl worked well together, and there's a funny scene when he is first approaching her in a restaurant and he precogs several different opening lines and sees how they pan out.  The script is reasonably compact and efficient, except for a few clankers where Cage and Biehl are driving together in Arizona (after Leaving Las Vegas) (sorry) and having a getting-to-know-you conversation.  They agree that they both like rain.  Watch that scene and see if you cringe.

     
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harrie
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« Reply #2638 on: November 21, 2007, 12:05:07 PM »

I thought HoV was pretty good, even if Hurt's accent was a bit odd.  The sex scene on the stairs was raw and interesting.   

See, I wasn't much into that.  That scene seemed kind of forced, and I don't mean that as a pun. Plus, I couldn't help thinking that poor Maria Bello's back was going to be really hurting after they got the scene.  When I get distracted enough to think of things like that, I figure something's missing.  But that's just me, asking too much of a hot sex scene, I guess.
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oilcanboyd23
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« Reply #2639 on: November 21, 2007, 02:02:41 PM »

I just got floored by "NCFOM" - simply brutal.  I can't even recommend it.  Don't get me wrong, I loved it, it was great, etc., but if you recommend it to someone, the next time you see them, they'll say, "Man, why the hell did you tell me to go see that?"

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