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John Llewellyn Probert (John_l_probert)
Username: John_l_probert

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 62.31.153.8
Posted on Wednesday, August 26, 2009 - 10:03 pm:   

Well if QT can mis-spell things I suppose it's ok to continue the trend in a thread title

I went to see Mr Tarantinoís latest today and I sadly have to report that I was distinctly underwhelmed by the experience. Overlong, overly self indulgent, and with only very occasional flashes of brilliance that I suspect are due more to the skills of those with which he has surrounded himself than Uncle Quentin the director, the one word I came away from Inglorious Basterds thinking was waste.

This movie is a waste of talent, especially Brad Pitt who is quite superb but criminally underused and given only the flimsiest of characters to work with. Itís a waste of a golden opportunity to do something fun, thrilling and exploitational with the World War II movie genre, and worst of all itís a waste of actual time. Clocking in at over two and a half hours it needs a hell of lot of cutting but even that wouldnít save a plot that basically consists of two strands that never come together satisfactorily, one of them not featuring the Basterds at all and relegating them to bit players for a big chunk of the running time. Not that we ever get to know them very well as theyíre given nothing in the way of characterisation or even dialogue for the most part. Dialogue scenes run on and on presumably with the intention of building tension but actually generating ennui. In fact I donít think Iíve ever sat with a more restless audience.

The barmy-but-fun central idea (letís lock all the high ranking German Officers including Hitler in a cinema and blow it up) needed a lot of panache to pull it off at all convincingly, but Tarantino comes across more like a ten year old whoís been asked to write a World War II story and has little or no grasp of any actual historical events. Finally, Mr Tís in-jokes. I appreciate these may grate on me more than others, partly I expect because I spot more of them. Indeed, when I winced at Brad Pitt announcing that his Italian cover name was Enzo Girolami Iím not sure if it was because thatís the real name of Enzo G Castellari who directed the original Inglorious Bastards or because I knew that. But all the same, calling characters names like Hugo Stiglitz (star of Umberto Lenziís Nightmare City) and Antonio Marghereti would work and would be fun if they were the seasoning on a satisfying exploitation movie, but here they just come across as horribly self-indulgent. He also gets a couple of names slightly wrong, which makes me wonder if mistakes like that and the title mis-spelling are deliberate or if he really canít be bothered to get even things like that right.

Anyone else seen it yet?
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Thomasb (Thomasb)
Username: Thomasb

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 69.236.174.143
Posted on Wednesday, August 26, 2009 - 10:05 pm:   

No . . . I keep thinking how nice it would be to see "Where Eagles Dare" yet again, my favorite "lets-kill-lots-of-Nazis" movie.
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John Llewellyn Probert (John_l_probert)
Username: John_l_probert

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 62.31.153.8
Posted on Wednesday, August 26, 2009 - 10:15 pm:   

Thomas - as I watched it I thought 'This isn't a patch on Where Eagles Dare'
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Craig (Craig)
Username: Craig

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 75.4.236.46
Posted on Wednesday, August 26, 2009 - 10:28 pm:   

Simple rule of thumb, almost never fails: all movies released in late August/early September are shit - it's the garbage pail of release dates.
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John Llewellyn Probert (John_l_probert)
Username: John_l_probert

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 62.31.153.8
Posted on Wednesday, August 26, 2009 - 10:30 pm:   

Why's that Craig?
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Craig (Craig)
Username: Craig

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 75.4.252.114
Posted on Thursday, August 27, 2009 - 12:38 am:   

It's because they figure no one goes to the movies at this time: late August means the crowds are exhausted from constant summer movie going, all the big budget movies of early summer/late spring; also, this is the time when everyone goes back to school here - colleges, grade schools - kids are too busy getting ready for that, getting into all that, to go see things - Labor Day used to be a weekend of busily getting ready for a return to work/school from long vacations, so it used to be the least movie-released weekend of the entire year: it's the one weekend of the year, that features were traditionally never released (though that's changed somewhat).

It's also a dumping ground for movies the studios don't know what to do with. They did dump a great movie over Labor Day a few years back - to single-digit theatres, too, and sans any publicity or fanfare - the great IDIOCRACY. Too bad, that one got treated that way....
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Karim Ghahwagi (Karim)
Username: Karim

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 80.163.6.13
Posted on Thursday, August 27, 2009 - 02:25 am:   

Yes just watched it. Agree with Lord P's review- too long, too little Brad Pitt. All I'd add is that the central villain, is it Christoph Waltz?-is my contender for Best actor oscar material, hands down- his 'over long' scenes were mesmerizing, particularly the opening one- he was amazing. Somehow Tarantino's writing worked mostly in the scenes with Waltz. And how weird to see Eli Roth there, cracking heads with a bat. I honestly thought it was going to be more violent, but thats me. I was impressed with some of the editing however, in some of those very long dialogue scenes. Buts thats what I'll give it, not a great picture.
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Chris_morris (Chris_morris)
Username: Chris_morris

Registered: 04-2008
Posted From: 12.165.240.116
Posted on Thursday, August 27, 2009 - 04:16 pm:   

FWIW, some notable movies released in late August/early September:

8/15/08 Vicky Cristina Barcelona
9/12/08 Burn After Reading
8/17/07 Superbad; The King of Kong
9/7/07 3:10 to Yuma
9/14/07 Eastern Promises
8/18/06 The Illusionist
8/25/06 Old Joy
9/8/06 Man Push Cart; Sherrybaby
8/19/05 The 40-Year-Old Virgin
8/31/05 The Constant Gardener
8/13/04 We Don't Live Here Anymore
8/20/04 Red Lights
9/10/04 When Will I Be Loved?
8/15/03 American Splendor; Confessions of a Dangerous Mind
9/12/03 Matchstick Men; Once Upon a Time in Mexico
9/19/03 Lost in Translation
8/23/02 The Isle
9/18/02 Das Experiment
8/17/01 Songs from the Second Floor
9/7/01 L.I.E.
8/18/00 The Cell
9/8/00 Nurse Betty
9/15/00 Almost Famous
9/10/99 A Stir of Echoes
9/15/99 American Beauty

I'm not a fan of every one of those movies, but I wouldn't call them "trash." Of course, it's true that Michael Bay has yet to release a movie in that time period, so maybe that's what Craig was on about.
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Craig (Craig)
Username: Craig

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 75.4.238.139
Posted on Thursday, August 27, 2009 - 05:13 pm:   

Hey, this is the old saw - and like all old saws, reality often doesn't match up.... Except for one, that never fails: No one knows anything.

(keep in mind, there are two kinds of movies in Hollywood: those that make a lot of money, and all the others, which to the bottom-line, are varying degrees of "trash"; those that will or be perceived to make a lot of money, will not be released, therefore, at this time - though they're often quite surprised [THE 40 YEAR-OLD VIRGIN] which leads to an attempt to repeat [SUPERBAD])

(and for accuracy of above, refer to old saw at top)
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Weber_gregston (Weber_gregston)
Username: Weber_gregston

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 212.121.214.11
Posted on Thursday, August 27, 2009 - 05:22 pm:   

I saw this on Sunday at my local multiplex and loved it. I can understand why other people might dislike it but I love it for most of those reasons. The scene in the bar with the gestapo officer was fantastic I thought. Through almost irrelevant dialogue it managed to ratchet up the tension brilliantly.

I think Tarantino still writes some of the best dialogue you'll hear in any movie and this film is full of it.

The ending was audacious to say the least. If there were any characters I didn't think would die (especially since the film was as that point set in 1944) it was Mr H and his 3 generals.

All in all I would recommend this almost unreservedly.
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Craig (Craig)
Username: Craig

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 75.4.253.139
Posted on Thursday, August 27, 2009 - 06:59 pm:   

Weber, some critic I heard mentioned another film as sort of "unlocking" some of the mystery of this one, and that film is TO BE OR NOT TO BE - he didn't explain what he meant in reference to this one, but does that make sense to you?...

I've not seen a Quentin film I've not admired greatly, even the poorer ones. He's a grandmaster chess player, and if he's making mistakes, they're of a wholly higher order all together....
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Karim Ghahwagi (Karim)
Username: Karim

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 80.163.6.13
Posted on Thursday, August 27, 2009 - 08:27 pm:   

I can watch Resevoir Dogs all the time. I have his collected screenplays which also include Natural Born Killers and True Romance.
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Gcw (Gcw)
Username: Gcw

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.150.109.19
Posted on Saturday, August 29, 2009 - 09:59 pm:   

Just saw Inglorious Bastards (yeah, I know the spelling...) today and I have to say I thought it stunk.

gcw
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Stephen Walsh (Stephenw)
Username: Stephenw

Registered: 03-2009
Posted From: 82.4.20.22
Posted on Sunday, August 30, 2009 - 03:13 am:   

I have to agree with Weber as I thought 'Inglorious Bastards' (sic) was big, dumb, unashamedly juvenile, utterly hilarious and quite possibly the most purely entertaining movie of the year so far!
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Stu (Stu)
Username: Stu

Registered: 04-2008
Posted From: 86.29.177.186
Posted on Sunday, August 30, 2009 - 09:32 am:   

>>some critic I heard mentioned another film as sort of "unlocking" some of the mystery of this one, and that film is TO BE OR NOT TO BE - he didn't explain what he meant in reference to this one, but does that make sense to you?...

I've not seen BASTERDS but if it's being compared to TO BE OR NOT TO BE does that mean it's an irreverent piss-take of Nazism?
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Stephen Walsh (Stephenw)
Username: Stephenw

Registered: 03-2009
Posted From: 82.4.20.22
Posted on Sunday, August 30, 2009 - 11:19 am:   

I'd call it Tarantino's first out-and-out comedy (of the very blackest hue). Not so much irreverent as just plain bonkers - and very, very funny imo.
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Gcw (Gcw)
Username: Gcw

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.150.109.19
Posted on Sunday, August 30, 2009 - 12:32 pm:   

I actually found it a terribly edited (or should I say 'unedited') film.

Also I absolutely hated the scene with the baseball bat & the Nazi who wouldn't give up his comrades.

It actually made the Nazi look like a hero, it sickened me too.

I thought this film was one of the worst messes I have seen in recent memory, I almost walked out of it.

gcw
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Mick Curtis (Mick)
Username: Mick

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.177.173.198
Posted on Sunday, August 30, 2009 - 12:49 pm:   

But Soozy liked it!
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Stephen Walsh (Stephenw)
Username: Stephenw

Registered: 03-2009
Posted From: 82.4.20.22
Posted on Sunday, August 30, 2009 - 01:24 pm:   

I think the point of that scene was to show the fanaticism of the Nazi officer in stark contrast to the ordinary joe German soldier who told them everything they wanted to know without blinking. It's an old joke but still a funny one.

The actor who played the Nazi "Jewhunter" character made the film for me - a brilliant comic performance. And Brad Pitt was very funny in it as well!

I actually found the whole thing closer to the spirit of Monty Python than I would have thought Tarantino capable of... the guy has talent to burn imho.
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Gcw (Gcw)
Username: Gcw

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.150.109.19
Posted on Sunday, August 30, 2009 - 02:55 pm:   

Blimey Stephen, I must have seen a different film!

Respect to you mate, But I couldn't disagree more.

Indeed Soozy liked it...Just when you think you understand your woman...

gcw
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Mick Curtis (Mick)
Username: Mick

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.177.173.198
Posted on Sunday, August 30, 2009 - 03:13 pm:   

Gels and war films don't usually mix...
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Stephen Walsh (Stephenw)
Username: Stephenw

Registered: 03-2009
Posted From: 82.4.20.22
Posted on Sunday, August 30, 2009 - 03:55 pm:   

Anyone going expecting a standard war film won't know what to make of this... it's a very silly black comedy spoof, wilfully juvenile and riotously entertaining.
I mean the guy who played Hitler was hilarious - closer to Spike Milligan's turn as der führer than Bruno Ganz!
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Gcw (Gcw)
Username: Gcw

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.150.109.19
Posted on Sunday, August 30, 2009 - 04:15 pm:   

My major problem was how I expect war films to be..

To me, there are two types, the factual (Downfall being a great example)and the fun (Kelly's Heroes, Dirty Dozen).

This disaster couldn't make up its mind what it wanted to be, I mean, I didn't find someone being beaten to death with basball bat funny, (I guess I just wasn't made for these times..:-)).

And it wasn't as if it was cartoon violence a la Tom n'Jerry (which I love).

Horrible...horrible film!

gcw
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Craig (Craig)
Username: Craig

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 75.5.1.169
Posted on Sunday, August 30, 2009 - 04:40 pm:   

My major problem was how I expect war films to be.., etc.

I do believe I hear a template theory calling....
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Stephen Walsh (Stephenw)
Username: Stephenw

Registered: 03-2009
Posted From: 82.4.20.22
Posted on Sunday, August 30, 2009 - 05:03 pm:   

You could even call it an alternate reality fantasy set during the Second World War period...
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Gcw (Gcw)
Username: Gcw

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.150.109.19
Posted on Sunday, August 30, 2009 - 05:11 pm:   

Just for the record here people....I did actually like this film, I went with NO preconceptions of what it would be like and whilst I think it could have had half an hour chopped off it, I did enjoy it for what it was.

There were one or two things which did annoy me...Brads accent did grate after a while and I agree with GCW (1) that the violence in some parts was a bit unnecessary and almost cringe worthy, also the fact that some of the scenes were far to drawn out...that said I did find it very funny in parts too.

It was quite strange for me to like a film and Gary not!...its usually the other way round!

Best not over analyse me thinks....just enjoy !!(or not)

Soozy
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Stephen Walsh (Stephenw)
Username: Stephenw

Registered: 03-2009
Posted From: 82.4.20.22
Posted on Sunday, August 30, 2009 - 05:24 pm:   

Well said!
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Gcw (Gcw)
Username: Gcw

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.150.109.19
Posted on Sunday, August 30, 2009 - 05:33 pm:   

(...get in the bloody kitchen woman!)

gcw
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Gcw (Gcw)
Username: Gcw

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.150.109.19
Posted on Sunday, August 30, 2009 - 05:34 pm:   

Ooops! been caught in the act.....yes Gary, straight away Gary......
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Gcw (Gcw)
Username: Gcw

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.150.109.19
Posted on Sunday, August 30, 2009 - 05:48 pm:   

...Good heavens. they will want the Vote next.

gcw
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Karim Ghahwagi (Karim)
Username: Karim

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 80.163.6.13
Posted on Monday, August 31, 2009 - 05:12 pm:   

But didn't anyone who saw the film think that the Waltz character delivered an amazing performance? I thought the film was going to be more violent. The baseball bat scene did other things as well, more sucessfully I thought, than some of the other absurdist inversions etc.
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Stephen Walsh (Stephenw)
Username: Stephenw

Registered: 03-2009
Posted From: 82.4.20.22
Posted on Tuesday, September 01, 2009 - 01:31 am:   

Karim, I said above that he stole the film for me... it was a riveting and very sinisterly funny performance.

Every time I see this actor from now on I'll automatically think "there's your man from 'Inglorious Bastards' (sic)" and smile as I think it.
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Tony (Tony)
Username: Tony

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.122.107.50
Posted on Tuesday, September 01, 2009 - 08:25 am:   

You know, this starting to sound like people anticipated a certain film and it never happened. What if next time folk took it for what it was?
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Gcw (Gcw)
Username: Gcw

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.150.109.19
Posted on Tuesday, September 01, 2009 - 11:25 am:   

Thats exactly what I did Tony....and I enjoyed it!

Soozy
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Zed (Gary_mc)
Username: Gary_mc

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.219.8.243
Posted on Tuesday, September 01, 2009 - 01:51 pm:   

Tony - that's a good point. You kow what I do these days? I try to sit down to watch every film with zero expectations. In this way, I get to enjoy a lot more than I don't.
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Protodroid (Protodroid)
Username: Protodroid

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 147.252.230.126
Posted on Tuesday, September 01, 2009 - 02:49 pm:   

Film magazines seem to survive parasitically on films now, draining them of excitement by the time they stagger to their release dates. The trailer for LA GRANDE ILLUSION is just the director at his desk talking for several minutes to camera about his intentions. How thrilling it would be today if someone like Scorcese did that instead of a standard trailer. That kind of thing is all cinema needs to do to keep audiences.

I really think we're on the cusp of the death of cinema as we know it. The same damage the premature arrival of sound caused to the evolution of cinematic grammar is in danger of being wreaked by new formats in the next few years.

Boycott 3D.
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Mick Curtis (Mick)
Username: Mick

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 194.106.220.19
Posted on Tuesday, September 01, 2009 - 03:01 pm:   

I think the multiplexes haven't helped. Fifteen years ago a six screen cinema opened up near me, showing 6 different films at any one time, and every tuesday evening they had a "Director's Chair" selection, which was usually a foreign language film, and just about always a supposedly minority interest one. Then after four years, these films started to become English language only, then shortly after that, they only showed mainstream films that'd been out a few weeks previously, "another chance to see...". Now it's the latest Harry Potter film on all screens.
Bastards.
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Karim Ghahwagi (Karim)
Username: Karim

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 80.163.6.13
Posted on Tuesday, September 01, 2009 - 03:49 pm:   

Yes but idiots are going to see these films- Transformers 2- what 350 mil. box office in the US. There was a fifteen percent increase in box office profits this year- (this is also due to increased admission prices BTW.)
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Stephen Walsh (Stephenw)
Username: Stephenw

Registered: 03-2009
Posted From: 194.72.14.113
Posted on Tuesday, September 01, 2009 - 04:39 pm:   

I always try to go into a movie with no expectations unless the film has been deliberately misrepresented in the advertising campaign, trailer, etc.

'Independence Day' was a classic example. The clips promised much but the final product was a pile of immature toss. Someday someone will make a serious, scary alien invasion movie. No one mention 'Signs' or Spielberg's mauling of 'War Of The Worlds'...
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Craig (Craig)
Username: Craig

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 75.4.252.180
Posted on Tuesday, September 01, 2009 - 04:43 pm:   

I hated SIGNS, and I hated INDEPENDENCE DAY. I liked WAR OF THE WORLDS for its Lovecraftian splendor, but it was oddly forgettable a film....

Stephen, the various INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS seems to me like serious, scary alien invasion movies... or do you mean spaceships and ray-guns and what-not?
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Stephen Walsh (Stephenw)
Username: Stephenw

Registered: 03-2009
Posted From: 194.72.14.113
Posted on Tuesday, September 01, 2009 - 04:51 pm:   

The first two 'Invasion Of The Body Snatchers' are top of the pile as far as sci-fi/horror goes. Love them both and could watch both over and over again particularly Don Siegel's original.

But I meant a serious, modern attempt to do the whole hostile flying saucers descending from the skies bit. Something along the apocalyptic lines of Romero's 'Dawn Of The Dead' only with alien monsters rather than zombies. Twould be great!
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Protodroid (Protodroid)
Username: Protodroid

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 147.252.230.126
Posted on Tuesday, September 01, 2009 - 04:52 pm:   

Mick, that's partly the kind of thing I mean. It's like art is being worn smooth, its features removed in the ebb and flow of advanced capitalism.
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Protodroid (Protodroid)
Username: Protodroid

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 147.252.230.126
Posted on Tuesday, September 01, 2009 - 04:59 pm:   

None of this is (very) new, but I think the adoption of 3D and its ilk is, and needs to be challenged.
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Weber_gregston (Weber_gregston)
Username: Weber_gregston

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 194.176.105.47
Posted on Tuesday, September 01, 2009 - 05:01 pm:   

My favourite version of Body Snatchers is the Abel Ferera - number 3 - even if only for Meg tilly's performance.
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Weber_gregston (Weber_gregston)
Username: Weber_gregston

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 194.176.105.47
Posted on Tuesday, September 01, 2009 - 05:04 pm:   

3D has been about for more than 60 years. It's hardly new. Hitchcock used it in Dial M for Murder so it's got damned good pedigree. It's only because it's so difficult to get right that it's not more common than it is.
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Craig (Craig)
Username: Craig

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 75.4.237.221
Posted on Saturday, September 05, 2009 - 12:32 am:   

Note: This weekend, not only is Mike Judge getting another dim Labor Day release (last one: the brilliant IDIOCRACY) with EXTRACT; but as per the theory, the big studio release is ALL ABOUT STEVE (shelved for about a year - legal issues, partly), which is getting the most execrable reviews so far this year, I hear. Rotten Tomatoes' collection of reviews ranks it 100% bad, a first.

It's about the studios' perceiving the movie as "problematic," let's say, and thus they release it now... at least, so the old wives' tales go. By the way, that list above?... Don't count mid-August movies (which I wasn't, originally: late August, as in the last week), you get even less films over 10 years....
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Steve Bacon (Stevebacon)
Username: Stevebacon

Registered: 09-2008
Posted From: 90.209.108.231
Posted on Saturday, September 05, 2009 - 08:59 am:   

Just going back to Tarantino for a moment - and I haven't yet seen IB - but I have to disagree with Weber's comment about Tarantino writing great dialogue. I think all his characters have the same voice. Yes, that might be good for one type of character, but not for them all.
I rewatched Pulp Fiction last night and - much as I love the film - I think the dialogue is poor ("Please, continue, you were saying something about best intentions. What's the matter? Oh, you were finished! Well, allow me to retort. ...")
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Stephen Walsh (Stephenw)
Username: Stephenw

Registered: 03-2009
Posted From: 82.4.18.104
Posted on Saturday, September 05, 2009 - 04:02 pm:   

That's a good point about Tarantino's dialogue. It's always obvious his character's only exist inside Quentin's mind and are speaking with his voice.

That's what gives his movies (with the honourable exception of his best film 'Jackie Brown') their one dimensional cartoon quality. He is a brilliant visual stylist first and foremost with a knack for wisecracking banter but not a "great" writer. I'd consider myself a grudging fan and rank his films thus:

1. Jackie Brown
2. Pulp Fiction
3. Reservoir Dogs
4. Inglourious Basterds
5. Death Proof
6. Kill Bill : Volume 2
7. Kill Bill : Volume 1

The sad thing is that with each new release he seems to be getting more immature and further away from the intelligence and relative subtlety of his first three films.
Though perhaps with outrageous black comedy (as in I.B.) he has finally found his true forte?
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Craig (Craig)
Username: Craig

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 75.4.226.243
Posted on Saturday, September 05, 2009 - 04:22 pm:   

It's entirely possible Tarrantino's films will have a "short" shelf-life, and disappear in time - there are larger cycles within cycles. Script-wise, he always seemed anyway, to be in the shadow of another wonder-kid who was lauded for his snappy unique dialogue in the midst of violence-laced films: Shane Black (LETHAL WEAPON, THE LONG KISS GOODNIGHT, etc.).
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Stu (Stu)
Username: Stu

Registered: 04-2008
Posted From: 86.29.183.11
Posted on Sunday, September 06, 2009 - 10:07 am:   

I really like Shane Black's scripts. Well, apart from THE LAST ACTION HERO. Although I vaguely recall reading an interview with him where he said Hollywood actually ignored most of the content of his scripts for LETHAL WEAPON, THE LAST BOY SCOUT etc and just wanted the one-liners he came up with. Not sure how serious he was about that.

Tarantino's dialogue: I was talking to a friend about this last night. On first seeing RD and PF I really thought Tarnatino's dialogue was incredibly realistic but repeated viewings revealed that it was actually very stylised, but in a different manner to a lot of other Hollywood films, creating the illusion of realism. (To be fair, all dialogue, be it in films, TV, novels, short stories poems etc can only create the illusion of realism; it's just a question of how well the illusion succeeds.)

A huge sticking point in the conversation was KILL BILL. I think the dialogue in that film was absolutely atrocious but my friend argued that the whole thing was a homage to trashy kung fu flicks which tend to feature atrocious dialogue and so Tarantino HAD to write atrocious dialogue otherwise KB wouldn't be true to the source material. My response was that KB had already moved away from Shaw Bros homage by featuring a caucasian female as the lead character. And as Tarantino was also happy to change all kinds of other things -- the non-linear plot, the split-screen, the soundtrack (kung fu movies tend not to feature music by Nancy Sinatra, Quincy Jones, The RZA and Isaac Hayes) -- then one fairly obvious change he should have made was to write some decent bloody dialogue.

Tarantino himslef has offered a defence which states that some of his films are movies within movies so that if PF had featured a scene where John Travolta went to the cinema the film he watched would have been KB (and possibly FROM DUSK TIL DAWN and INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS). That's why KILL BILL is so OTT - it's a fantasy within a fantasy. Problem is this defence only works if it's explained in the film itself and not just in an interview which most of the audience won't even have seen.

Another defence that Tarantino used to defend KB is that it's a comedy but I don't think that holds water as, a handful of amusing moments aside, it just isn't that funny.
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Stephen Walsh (Stephenw)
Username: Stephenw

Registered: 03-2009
Posted From: 82.4.18.104
Posted on Sunday, September 06, 2009 - 02:11 pm:   

A brilliant critique Caroline!!

Tarantino wants to have his cake and eat it. He can't accept any aspect of his talent as being any less than "genius" and refuses to own up to his limitations. Visually he cannot be faulted but his scripts (which he was too long lauded for) are no more than entertaining hooks to hang his images on.

Another major flaw in his filmmaking is his utter refusal to countenance original music in his films always having to show us how great his record collection is. He may just be the greatest pop video director the world has ever seen...

He is shamelessly entertaining though and there's nowt wrong with that in my book!
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Stephen Walsh (Stephenw)
Username: Stephenw

Registered: 03-2009
Posted From: 82.4.18.104
Posted on Sunday, September 06, 2009 - 02:12 pm:   

Sorry... a brilliant critique Stu lol.
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Stu (Stu)
Username: Stu

Registered: 04-2008
Posted From: 86.29.178.81
Posted on Sunday, September 06, 2009 - 04:11 pm:   

Oh yeah, QT's entertaining. Just not always as much as he thinks he is.

And to be fair to KILL BILL I did read some critiques recently that suggested QT hid all kinds of clever themes and motifs in the dialogue of both Vol 1 and 2. It's just a shame that the dialogue is so bloody painful to listen to.

Btw, I wouldn't swear to it but I think The RZA music in KILL BILL may have been original to the film.
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Craig (Craig)
Username: Craig

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 75.5.1.219
Posted on Sunday, September 06, 2009 - 05:00 pm:   

Yes, very good critique, Stu. I think the genius QT might be suffering from the same malady M. Night Shyamalan suffered from, and before him, George Lucas: brilliant first attempts, implying relatively little "suffering" to get there, followed-up by legions of "yes-men" deferring always back to the prime genius, which means no criticism of his still-human-and-so-not-always-perfect vision of any kind, which leads immediately to esoteric works of lack and decadence and not a little arrogance.

The lasting great ones are tempered - in writing, King and Vonnegut both landed with great wide applause (CARRIE and SLAUGHTER-HOUSE 5 respectively), but got there along long, hard, painful, soul-searching roads... so immediate success didn't go right to their heads, and their follow-up body of work, reflects that....
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Allybird (Allybird)
Username: Allybird

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 80.47.88.46
Posted on Sunday, September 06, 2009 - 05:49 pm:   

The Kill Bill films were so wonderfully over the top that I brought an idea from them into a story and sent it over the top too - gave it that push too far - with relish.
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John Llewellyn Probert (John_l_probert)
Username: John_l_probert

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 90.203.130.178
Posted on Sunday, September 06, 2009 - 09:56 pm:   

Btw, I wouldn't swear to it but I think The RZA music in KILL BILL may have been original to the film.

Certainly the track Ode to O-ren Ishii is credited to The RZA on the album but it uses a continuous looped sample of Vince Tempera's theme from Sette Notte in Nero - by Lucio Fulci! But I suppose using samples counts as 'original' work these days
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Stu (Stu)
Username: Stu

Registered: 04-2008
Posted From: 86.29.190.40
Posted on Monday, September 07, 2009 - 12:08 pm:   

While I'm thinking of it, in the anime section of KILL BILL did anyone else think that the floppy-haired henchman with the rings and the samurai sword was supposed to be a young Bill? He looked kind of like an anime version of a young David Carradine and all we'd seen of Bill so far had been his ringed hands stroking his samurai sword so I assumed that this was Bill's early years before he formed the Deadly Viper Squad. So I was totally confused as to why O-ren Ishii later worked for the man who killed her father. I kept waiting for an explanation that never arrived.

I think Vol 2 features some background on Bill's early years and IIRC it's never mentioned that he killed O-ren's parents so presumably he didn't and the resemblance was just coincidental.* Still throws me off whenever I watch the anime section though.

*It was mentioned on another message board where this topic cropped up that the design of the rings and sword in the shot of Bill's hands is slightly different to that in the anime section so it does appear to be a different character.
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Zed (Gary_mc)
Username: Gary_mc

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.219.8.243
Posted on Tuesday, January 05, 2010 - 02:07 pm:   

Last night I watched Inglourious Basterds, and at the risk of going against the grain, I bloody loved it. The film comes on like a mad cross between Sergio Leone and Mel Brooks, and the first twenty minutes are simply the best (and most tense) piece of filmmaking I've seen this year.

The plot is ludicrous yet utterly enthralling, the acting is uniformly superb, the screenplay is clever, self-indulgent, funny and suprising, and the violence is actually quite bone-chilling (the only other baseball bat scene to make me cringe like this was the one in Scorcese's Casino).

I don't think there's ever been such a polarizing director as Tarantino in mainstream Hollywood; you either buy into his gig or you don't. Hell, I even loved Death Proof - a film even hardened QT fans seem to dislike.
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Zed (Gary_mc)
Username: Gary_mc

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.219.8.243
Posted on Tuesday, January 05, 2010 - 02:16 pm:   

Oh, yes: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0985694/

I can't wait.
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Stephen Walsh (Stephenw)
Username: Stephenw

Registered: 03-2009
Posted From: 194.32.31.1
Posted on Tuesday, January 05, 2010 - 02:54 pm:   

I couldn't agree more, Zed.

As said elsewhere 'Inglourious Basterds' was my comedy of the year and a storming return to form for Tarantino imho.
I enjoyed 'Death Proof' but found it a bit slight while 'Kill Bill' was a monstrously self-indulgent mess - albeit a fascinating mess.
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Mark West (Mark_west)
Username: Mark_west

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 217.39.177.173
Posted on Tuesday, January 05, 2010 - 02:55 pm:   

What a great cast for "Machete" - if it's anything like the trailer, it'll be terrific!
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Zed (Gary_mc)
Username: Gary_mc

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 213.219.8.243
Posted on Tuesday, January 05, 2010 - 03:17 pm:   

IMHO, the key to "getting" Tarantino's films is to realise that the stories he creates don't exist in any world other than a purely personal cinematic one; there's nothing even slightly realistic about any of them. His films are uber-stylised to a degree that some just don't like them. Me, I love 'em. Kill Bill was magnificent.
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Craig (Craig)
Username: Craig

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 75.5.0.133
Posted on Tuesday, January 05, 2010 - 04:06 pm:   

I liked INGLORIUS BASTERDS quite a bit. Some things I found interesting.... (*SPOILERS*)

Did anyone else notice how static IB was? I mean stylistically: characters are often just stock still, standing or sitting or posing, talking, not moving. The opening sequence for example, or the baseball bat scene - with the other "basterds" and soldiers perched around unmoving, watching - and so on. Characters sitting and playing a tense card game, then a sudden explosion of violence, then back to characters locked in place. At the end, you have a grand finale of the stilled, with the seated theater-goers.

Also, it's a movie that feels like it was oddly hollowed out of its 2nd Act: we're introduced to the "basterds" who are preparing to set forth to do very bad things to the Nazis, we get one glimpse of that ravaging stride with the baseball bat scene - and then bam! Fast-forward some years to the big climactic end-story. The ensemble structure, watching characters that take up screen-time and end up dying (ala DEATH PROOF), simply denies their development, and again puts them into a kind of "stasis" - they've zipped from a 1st to a 3rd Act, it seems.... The very last scene renders the preceding the eerie feel of a concluding "Tales from the Crypt" or "Alfred Hitchcock Presents," but all screwed up somehow and in some way you can't quite put your finger on....

All fwiw. Again, a good QT flick, I deem it.
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Zed (Gary_mc)
Username: Gary_mc

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 81.96.240.106
Posted on Tuesday, January 05, 2010 - 05:03 pm:   

That's one of the things I found so interesting about the film, Craig - that stasis of the characters, and the fact that it went ina completely unexpected direction in the second act. Also, the death scene in the projection booth reminded me very much of this incredible Fassbinder sequence:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qv_ZFUiu7OQ
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Stephen Walsh (Stephenw)
Username: Stephenw

Registered: 03-2009
Posted From: 194.32.31.1
Posted on Tuesday, January 05, 2010 - 05:21 pm:   

What 'Inglourious Basterds' proved to me is that if Tarantino is going to give full rein to his imagination - and to hell with narrative plausibility - he's best to do it as insanely Pythonesque black comedy.

'Kill Bill' certainly had its moments but also took itself far too seriously for my liking.
'Death Proof' pointed the way for him to go and 'IG' seems to have resulted in a complete artistic rejuvenation. He may just have found his voice at last instead of slavishly aping his favourite cult movies.

The guy was always bursting with cinematic talent and raw invention but seemed to have trouble channelling it coherently. I look forward to his next move...
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Gcw (Gcw)
Username: Gcw

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.170.202.7
Posted on Tuesday, January 05, 2010 - 06:05 pm:   

Awful film!

gcw:-)
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Zed (Gary_mc)
Username: Gary_mc

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 81.96.240.106
Posted on Tuesday, January 05, 2010 - 06:17 pm:   

Get away with you, yon axe-man.
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Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.10.7.83
Posted on Tuesday, January 05, 2010 - 06:59 pm:   

I loved Death Proof, too. Looking forward to IB.
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Zed (Gary_mc)
Username: Gary_mc

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 81.96.240.106
Posted on Tuesday, January 05, 2010 - 07:26 pm:   

You know everything about films, mate.
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Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.10.7.83
Posted on Tuesday, January 05, 2010 - 08:01 pm:   

Huzzah!
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Zed (Gary_mc)
Username: Gary_mc

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 81.96.240.106
Posted on Wednesday, January 06, 2010 - 04:39 pm:   

ooooh, tonight it's The Burrowers. Can't wait.

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