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Old 05-25-2010, 06:00 PM   #2526
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Re: Movie Recommendations

I'm really looking forward to seeing Animal Kingdom. It's an Aussie film that took out the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance this year. All the reviews have been glowing and the trailer looks sensational. Probably the only actor familiar to non-Australian audiences is Guy Pearce, but the entire cast is stellar. Not sure when it will be released OS.

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Old 06-10-2010, 04:23 PM   #2527
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Re: Movie Recommendations

I watched Animal Kingdom last night with six friends. Every single person loved it . It's the best film I've seen all year. If you like gritty, character-driven crime dramas, you'll like this. It has an August 13 release date in the US.


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At 17, Joshua ‘J’ Cody (James Frecheville) already has the sunken eyes and stripped look of someone who has seen too much. After the death of his mother, J is left to find his place among his estranged criminal family, particularly his uncles, the Cody boys: temperamental speed fiend Craig Cody (Sullivan Stapleton), fresh-faced and weak-kneed Darren Cody (Luke Ford) and in-hiding armed robber Pope Cody (Ben Mendelsohn). Barry ‘Baz’ Brown (Joel Edgerton) is a mate of Pope’s, feeling his way to a fresh start for himself and betraying signs of genuine affection for J (with the offer of some pearls of hygiene-related wisdom). Watching ever vigilantly over them all is J’s grandmother Smurf (Jacki Weaver), with whom the boys share an unhealthy intimacy. There is something not quite right with this family portrait.

First blood is spilt, stalemates broken, and tensions between the family and the police erupt. Forced into a corner, J finds himself – together with his hapless girlfriend – in the midst of a bloody battle. With J’s world spiralling out of control, senior cop in standard issue moustache Nathan Leckie (Guy Pearce) steps in to offer him a way out.

It’s a superb script, written and directed by first-timer Michod, that smashes the mould of the Australian crime drama. The casting of Frecheville is testament to Michod’s resistance to sexing up: Frecheville is a newcomer who looks uncomfortable in his own spotty skin let alone as a leading man. Following a character like J – nervous, silent, secretive – into the web of the criminal underworld is as chilling as it ought to be. Animal Kingdom expertly dodges the clichés of the form and therefore finds in the form a newfound power to knock the wind out of you.

That’s when it’s not busy tying your stomach in knots: Animal Kingdom is permeated by the feeling of sinking dread that was so enthralling in the Edgerton brothers’ The Square. It’s not too far off from the feeling that Constable Leckie describes to Smurf in a scene in the film, the feeling of knowing that they’ll get you one of these days – an emotional temperature that fans of another particular crime saga know as ‘the Heat’. The tone is set brilliantly by its opening credits sequence, accompanied by composer Antony Partos’s sinister synths. Patmos’s score is stunning throughout in fact: the undoing of the Cody family is set to a dark waltz, the dance they knew they’d have to dance.

Michod has assembled one of the finest Australian casts in recent memory. There are several extraordinary performances on display – count the psychopaths – but Ben Mendolsohn is an especially thrilling presence as the unhinged Pope, capable of being terrifying without a perceptible movement. As with The Square, the script is so rich that the characters, even minor ones, seem to live off-screen. A short segment depicting Leckie’s home life is deeply illuminating, and a couple of police officers become more than just nameless victims. Michod makes a commitment to a quality and style of writing that’s more common on the page than the screen. When certain characters are killed off – and this is another area where Michod has a great ability to really surprise – we feel the loss because we feel we know them.

With Animal Kingdom, Porchlight Films cements its reputation as a force to be reckoned with, and Michod proves himself a filmmaker of talent, skill and insight. It’s an exceptional Australian film that will lurk in the shadows of your memory for a long time afterwards.


http://www.thevine.com.au/entertainm...w20100525.aspx
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Old 06-20-2010, 06:49 PM   #2528
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Re: Movie Recommendations

Have any of you seen the documentary Dear Zachary: A Letter To A Son About His Father?

My god. I can't stop thinking about it. It has probably changed my life, and also probably made me a little dehydrated from all the crying. But it is really good.
It's about this filmmaker whose best friend Andrew is murdered by his girlfriend. Then the girlfriend flees to newfoundland, and it turns out she's pregnant with Andrew's baby. Andrew's parents are trying to get her extradited and get custody of the baby. That's all I'll tell you, but it is all true and totally heartwrenching.

I'd link you to the official page, but I can't because it gives away what happens. It is currently available on Watch Instantly on Netflix, though.
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Old 06-22-2010, 06:17 AM   #2529
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Re: Movie Recommendations

Anyone seen Toy Story 3 yet?
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Old 06-22-2010, 06:20 AM   #2530
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Re: Movie Recommendations

No but I was looking back at the first one and can't believe it was 15 years ago. 15.
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Old 06-25-2010, 02:04 PM   #2531
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Re: Movie Recommendations

The Worst Movies Never Made: http://www.slate.com/id/2257867/pagenum/all

Quote:
Lord of the Rings—starring the Beatles
It's widely known that the road to filming Lord of the Rings—first published in 1954—was nearly as long and torturous as Frodo's journey to Mount Doom. Early on, Tolkien stated a preference for the "vulgarization" of an animated version over the "sillification" of a dramatization. According to Roy Carr's The Beatles at the Movies, talks were once in the works for a Beatle-zation—with John Lennon wanting to play Gollum, Paul McCartney Frodo, George Harrison Gandalf, and Ringo Starr Sam. Collaborating with director John Boorman, screenwriter Rospo Pallenberg thought the Beatles should play the four hobbits (and agreed with McCartney that he would be the ideal Frodo). It's difficult, but entertaining, to imagine the Fab Four subsuming their personas to Tolkien's storytelling, but United Artists decided not to move ahead on the project, with the Beatles or without them.
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Old 06-25-2010, 02:12 PM   #2532
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Re: Movie Recommendations

Quote:
Quentin Tarantino's Barney Miller
The winners of the invent-your-own-movie-based-on-an-'80s-TV-show contest.


When The A-Team came out earlier this month, I decided to make that movie's flimsy excuse for existence into an even flimsier pretext for a Slate "Summer Movies" contest. I challenged readers to send me their elevator pitches for a big-screen version of an '80s TV show.

So many of you responded that I'm only now digging my way out from under the hundreds of entries. As I plowed through them, one truth loomed large: The penultimate decade of the 20th century was a time of some highly dubious television programming. Baywatch? Manimal? ALF? Makin' It? Shows like this don't need fictional reboots to be funny; the joke resides in the fact that they ever existed in the first place. The best entries poked affectionate fun at both the dated sensibility of TV shows gone by and the absurdity of a contemporary movie culture that mines them for pop-cultural significance. At the end of the list below, you'll find our winner, preceded by an unranked list of some of the funnier entries I received. Contestants' names are given as they were sent to me.

*An astonishing number of people suggested casting Dakota Fanning as V.I.C.I., the obedient robot-child in Small Wonder. The best of these pitches came from Joshua Freemire: "Dakota Fanning plays V.I.C.I. the child robot in a big-screen Small Wonder. This time, however, we flip the script: After a shipping mix-up, V.I.C.I. is being raised in crushing poverty, a la Precious. Theme: How Does a Heartless Robot Handle the Heartbreak of Systemic Poverty? Total Oscar-bait for Dakota."

*More than one entry noted the thematic overlap between Golden Girls and Sex and the City, proposing that, if their franchise keeps going, Carrie, Miranda, et al. can one day be cast as the superannuated Miami foursome. But my favorite Golden Girls pitch was the loopiest one, from Henry Visotski: "After four black-ops agents (Angelina Jolie, Uma Thurman, Halle Berry, and Robin Williams) are framed for the murder of an Afghan politician, they have to hide out in a Florida retirement community with ninja assassins hot on their trail."

*Tony Vindett's reinvention of Knight Rider would sound perfectly plausible at an ideas table, and may actually be in development somewhere: "Leo DiCaprio is a counter-ecoterrorism operative whose secret weapon is an AI-enhanced Toyota Prius!"

*William Rohde just may restart the 84-year-old Andy Griffith's career with Matlock: Locked and Loaded: "The loss of his first case sends mild-mannered defense attorney Matlock over the edge, where his gentle southern demeanor gives way to the Vietnam-era CIA assassin he thought he'd left behind forever, and where his only solace can be found in explosive, high-octane revenge against the crooked jury who tarnished his perfect record."

*Steve Forsberg, noting that District 9 proved there is "a demographic attracted to movies that deal with illegal immigration in a sci-fi context," repurposes Mork & Mindy as a feature-length drama, with "Mindy as a conflicted ICE agent harboring the undocumented Ork citizen Mork in her Denver home, with alien sex scenes as appropriate for the PG-13 crowd. "

*Sometimes, a title and a director is all that's needed to conjure a whole movie: "Rob Marshall brings Cop Rock to the big screen!" gushed Neil Quarterman, while J. Lutz evoked a far grittier police procedural in just four words: "Quentin Tarantino's Barney Miller."

I'm going to award first place to Deanna Tolliver's pitch for not only cleverly recasting an '80s sitcom according to the new rules of Hollywood, but nailing the solemnly bogus language of the remake-trailer voiceover: "A tragic accident. A friend's promise. A new life. This summer, the world moves to the beat of just one drum. Willow Smith. Jaden Smith. Brad Pitt. Diff'rent Strokes: The world's about to get moved."
http://www.slate.com/id/2258123/
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Old 06-27-2010, 06:37 PM   #2533
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Re: Movie Recommendations

Balibo is an absolutely stunning film about the invasion of East Timor by Indonesia in the mid-1970's. An estimate 140,000 East Timorese died during Indonesian reign, along with a group of Australian TV journalists known here as the Balibo Five. The central character is an Aussie journalist called Roger East (played brilliantly by Anthony LaPaglia) who goes to East Timor to investigate the disappearance of his colleagues. Flawless screenplay and performances.

Balibo only had a very limited film festival release in the US but if you can track it down on DVD, I highly recommend it.


Last edited by Sydneyfan; 06-27-2010 at 06:41 PM..
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Old 07-09-2010, 05:22 PM   #2534
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Re: Movie Recommendations

The Last Airbender (M. Night Shyamalan's newest film) has gone from 2% to 8% on RottenTomatoes. So it's on the upswing. Go see it.

http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/last_airbender/
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Old 07-09-2010, 05:32 PM   #2535
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Re: Movie Recommendations

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Originally Posted by hildegoat View Post
The Last Airbender (M. Night Shyamalan's newest film) has gone from 2% to 8% on RottenTomatoes. So it's on the upswing. Go see it.

http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/last_airbender/
I'm surprised he can still find people to finance his films. Although I will admit to watching The Happening twice because it was pretty funny.
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Old 07-09-2010, 05:35 PM   #2536
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Re: Movie Recommendations

Airbender review.Ouch.

Quote:
Where do I begin with how bad this film is? The special effects are amateurish and unconvincing (fire where no one gets burned, anyone?), the cast, while talented, is hobbled by the script which consists of emphatic phrases (“What now?”) rather than real conversation, the story is predictable and, worst of all, the film is just flat. There’s a blandness to every aspect of this production that makes it deathly dull and a chore to sit through. A disaster at every turn, The Last Airbender, is proof that Shyamalan’s next move should be to take a couple of years off. Better for him and better for filmgoers everywhere.
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Old 07-13-2010, 01:23 PM   #2537
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Re: Movie Recommendations

Spoiler:
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Old 07-13-2010, 06:37 PM   #2538
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Re: Movie Recommendations

I'm starting to think he just got lucky with The Sixth Sense and that his ability has been overated ever since. It was the only one of his twist at the end films that actually was surprising - most people could have figured out the twist in The Village within the first five minutes and the end of Signs is just silly.
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Old 07-13-2010, 06:59 PM   #2539
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Re: Movie Recommendations

Lady in The Water is on right now, I may just go to bed.


One thing for you guys to look out for on BBC America/BBC Australia/BBC Mongolia, 4-part drama called The Silence. Hooked within 20 minutes.
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The Silence: a deaf writer's view of the BBC thriller

I'm a big fan of crime series that deliver juicy slices of TV viewing in one-hour chunks. And The Silence, with its intriguing if rather convenient storyline that leaves the viewer wanting more, does just that. But it has an extra point of interest: deaf actor Genevieve Barr's character, Amelia Edwards, who has a cochlear implant and is trying to come to terms with her new hearing.

It's Amelia's gap year, but rather than going to university or travelling, she gets an implant to give her more hearing after a lifetime of being deaf. But it's not all simple – she now has to spend her days at hearing-therapy sessions, tediously reading out childish sentences and being berated for using sign language. She's got to contend with an overprotective mother who sees her as a vulnerable child and the cacophony of distorted sounds that people with recent implants experience. If that wasn't enough for any moody teenager, she then witnesses a murder. The Silence becomes a clever portrayal of the realities of adapting to a new cochlear implant interwoven into a classic murder drama.

Deaf characters do not appear on TV often and can be cast into stereotypical roles that look at them only in terms of their deafness rather than the whole person. While there's a bit of this in how Amelia is put across as a "vulnerable" girl – 18-year-olds just do not go around knocking on car windows crying: "I'm deaf, please help" – Barr does well in her first major TV role. She gives some depth to Amelia – in addition to having an implant, she's a teenager who smokes, gets drunk, harbours resentment towards her mother and makes some unwise choices in love. Unfortunately, deaf teenagers have to go through all this stuff too.

A friend who got a cochlear implant in her 20s told me she thought the representation was "slightly too unbelievable". "The distorted sounds imply she's only had the CI recently so it would be fairly difficult to have had a full conversation with her uncle standing behind her." Amelia's lipreading abilities are also exaggerated – anyone who can lipread those little blurred CCTV faces with the same certainty should consider espionage as a career.

But that's just nitpicking. Overall, Barr's performance is excellent and hints at a girl who is teetering at boiling point and is going to let loose soon – probably in episode two.

Amelia's parents introduce an interesting insight into the dilemmas that parents of deaf children and teenagers often face when trying to balance what they feel is best for their children with advice from experts. Anne – who follows the audiologist's advice to the letter, scolding anyone who signs to her daughter – may come across as unreasonable, but many parents of deaf children are told by audiologists not to use sign language. Anne's husband Chris is unhappy with this new militant regime and the toll it takes on Amelia. From time to time, he and Amelia take pleasure in using the forbidden language. It'd be good to see them doing this more in subsequent episodes – merely because I believe Barr learned to sign for the part and I want to see how good she is.

Cochlear implants remain a prickly issue among deaf people – some see them as an extreme medical intervention aimed at "fixing" otherwise healthy deaf people and turning them into hearing people, while others see them as just a tool, a fancy hearing aid, that give deaf people more access to hearing society. The Silence has managed to avoid taking sides in what remains a highly contentious and even divisive topic. It doesn't seek to cast cochlear implants as a miracle cure or as a soul-destroying process – instead, it focuses on the character of someone who has an implant.

And it is also refreshing to see a deaf actor play a major role in a drama that doesn't focus on deafness. Instead, it is an extra element to what is primarily an enjoyable thriller.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/tv-and-rad...f-bbc-thriller
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Old 07-13-2010, 07:13 PM   #2540
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Re: Movie Recommendations

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Airbender review.Ouch.
That's too bad. The cartoon "Avatar" was awesome.

Oh, and I was totally surprised by The Village.
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Old 07-13-2010, 11:06 PM   #2541
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Re: Movie Recommendations

You all will probably make fun of me for this, but I actually liked The Village, and I thought Lady in the Water was okay too.

I was not into The Happening though. The acting was just awful in that movie. The concept was interesting, but ugh. I have no desire to see the airbender, even before the bad reviews.

Oh, and I rented The Last Station to watch tomorrow. I'm really excited to see it!
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Old 07-13-2010, 11:34 PM   #2542
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Re: Movie Recommendations

Ha, its cool that you guys liked The Village. Each to their own. And to be fair, it was one of his better films.
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Old 07-14-2010, 07:18 AM   #2543
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Re: Movie Recommendations

Yeah, I actually liked the Village. I remember seeing Lady in the Water when it was on TV once but can't even remember how it ends, so that probably says it all. Haven't seen his last two.
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Old 07-16-2010, 08:33 AM   #2544
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Re: Movie Recommendations

I REALLY liked The Village. Thought it was better than The Sixth Sense actually. The only fault with The Village was that it was marked like a supernatural film when really I thought it was more a social commentary drama.

In other news, I'm going to see Inception tonight and CANNOT WAIT!
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Old 07-19-2010, 03:42 PM   #2545
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Re: Movie Recommendations

He gets groans and laughs when his name comes on the screen now.

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Old 07-19-2010, 04:27 PM   #2546
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Re: Movie Recommendations

Ha, I notice that he wrote and produced this one, but someone else directed it. Out of interest, I just googled what Devil is about. The story sounds pretty interesting but it also sounds very similar to a short film called Elevated.
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Old 07-19-2010, 05:12 PM   #2547
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Re: Movie Recommendations

Watched Shutter Island over the weekend. I thought it tried to hard to have a big twist. While I didn't have everything sacrificially figured out, I thought it was pretty predictable.
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Old 07-19-2010, 06:45 PM   #2548
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Re: Movie Recommendations

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Originally Posted by Rob View Post
Watched Shutter Island over the weekend. I thought it tried to hard to have a big twist. While I didn't have everything sacrificially figured out, I thought it was pretty predictable.
BIG PLOT SPOILER
Spoiler:
Yup. The only bit I thought was clever was at the very end, where Leo asks asks whether its better to live as a monster or die as a good man. That was a fairly neat little extra twist I thought.
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Old 07-29-2010, 01:49 PM   #2549
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Re: Movie Recommendations

A glowing article about the Ruddster: http://www.slate.com/id/2260340/pagenum/all/

Quote:
Rudd's rise is well-deserved and, for those who've been following his career, hardly unexpected. For the last decade, he has toiled in the background as a supporting character in big hits and popped up in unseen indie comedies (if you haven't yet, see The Chateau for a peerless Rudd performance), always distinguishing himself as an adroit and funny presence. There have also been cameos in cult TV series, hilarious talk show appearances, and random Internet doodles. It all adds up a body of work that is one of the funniest—and most underrated—in recent American comedy.
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Old 07-29-2010, 06:30 PM   #2550
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Re: Movie Recommendations

Quote:
Originally Posted by hildegoat View Post
A glowing article about the Ruddster: http://www.slate.com/id/2260340/pagenum/all/
Good article, thanks. Celery Man is awesome.
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