UKBouldering.com

Anyone seen any good films lately - Part the second (Read 1190182 times)

Falling Down

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Posts: 4896
  • Karma: +333/-4
    • bensblogredux
Perfect Days

Wim Wenders’ latest, Japanese with subtitles.

Kōji Yakusho is a toilet cleaner in a posh part of Tokyo. The film examines the repetition of his simple life and the joy he gets from his potentially mundane job in forensic detail. Yes it’s one of those arty films where nothing much happens very beautifully.

Yakusho is in his 60s but still handsome, his clothes are supposed to be poor and basic but he looks like he’s modelling for Margaret Howell. He has rather intellectual literary tastes. His flat is a fantasy of old Japan, elegantly austere. Poverty or minimalism? All this seems unlikely for a toilet cleaner; later in the film there are hints as to why it might be somewhat plausible.

He leads a solitary, monk-like existence, with minimal interaction with the rest of the world. Snippets of music punctuate the silence: 60s and 70s rock and soul, mostly predictable (Lou Reed of course) with a couple of wild cards. There is some humour made with his choice of medium, currently achingly trendy cassette tapes. It slightly feels like wish-fulfilment for financially secure middle-aged blokes: abandon all ties, run away from home, live a simple life (in a cave at Siurana?). Perhaps this is what he has done.

A number of women interact with him obliquely. At one point I thought there might be an icky old-guy-cute-young-woman thing about to happen but fortunately Wenders has better taste. The only romantic interest hinted, more realistically, is a not much younger bar owner.

There is no resolution and you might think the whole thing is a two hour shaggy dog story. I really enjoyed it but I'm the kind of person who enjoys a Japanese-German art-house movie.

We watched this last night on Mubi and both loved it. Can’t add anything to Duncan’s accurate and erudite review other than the toilet tours are now available as a tourist tour attraction.


Fultonius

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Posts: 4361
  • Karma: +143/-3
  • Was strong but crap, now weaker but better.
    • Photos
 Dune 2

We caught it on Sunday at the Imax (not totally convinced by imax when there's a lot of action - even in row G it felt quite mentally taxing to watch, and in the slower scenes, does my enjoyment increase by being able to see people's plukes and wrinkles)

Having not read the book, our criticisms are maybe pointed more at the source material than the film maker but we came away with a feeling that Dune 2 glorified war too much for our liking and, like the end of dune 1 (I think, haven't seen it since the cinema) has all these standard tropes of Russian looking/sounding "bad guys"

And

NSFW  :
how the fuck do they get a full caravan installed on one of this sand worm things? Massive plot hole.

Yeah, nice visuals and good soundscape but... Is that enough these days?

Bradders

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Posts: 2817
  • Karma: +135/-3
Having not read the book, our criticisms are maybe pointed more at the source material than the film maker but we came away with a feeling that Dune 2 glorified war too much for our liking and, like the end of dune 1 (I think, haven't seen it since the cinema) has all these standard tropes of Russian looking/sounding "bad guys"

My understanding is that Frank Herbert wrote Dune Messiah (2nd book) specifically to address the first takeaway, i.e. people thinking that Paul Atreides is a hero, when as the instigator of a galaxy wide war which kills billions of people he is anything but. Which sort of addresses the second issue, in the sense that if Paul et al aren't "the good guys", which they definitely aren't, then there are no good guys.

The essay Sean linked to a while back on the economics of Dune is genuinely well worth a read.

Will Hunt

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Superworm is super-long
  • Posts: 8029
  • Karma: +636/-117
    • Unknown Stones
I enjoyed Dune 2 but not nearly as much as Dune 1. I absolutely loved Dune 1 though, so any feeling of disappointment could just be a reflection of how high the bar had been set.

jwi

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Posts: 4257
  • Karma: +332/-1
    • On Steep Ground
Frank Herbert definitly tried to trick people into routing for a messianic figure, then showing how dangerous they are. This is  a hard task and in my humble opinion, Herbert mostly failed. I thought Villeneuve was quite a bit closer to succeeding, mostly by blaiming mom for the son's choices and by inserting a Mary Sue.

No one is leaving the movie theater thinking that a galaxy-spanning Jihad is just? No?

Fultonius

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Posts: 4361
  • Karma: +143/-3
  • Was strong but crap, now weaker but better.
    • Photos
No one is leaving the movie theater thinking that a galaxy-spanning Jihad is just? No?

I would hope not.

Quote
Frank Herbert definitely tried to trick people into routing for a messianic figure, then showing how dangerous they are. This is  a hard task and in my humble opinion, Herbert mostly failed. I thought Villeneuve was quite a bit closer to succeeding, mostly by blaming mom for the son's choices and by inserting a Mary Sue.

I can't quite pin down what it was that didn't click. Maybe not having read the book, the narrative arc was too clunky, maybe the acting of Paul, or the dialogue or something just didn't quite deliver the feeling for me. I never felt like I was rooting for him, in fact, for most of the film I didn't care much for anyone other than Chani, but even that relationship wasn't very deftly handled.

I doubt anyone's not seen it yet, but for those who haven't I'll hide the spoilers:
NSFW  :

In fact, in the fights scene against Fayd-Rautha I was wondering if the film might get more interesting if Paul died?

I'm not really a good enough film critic to figure out what it was that I/we didn't "get".  Maybe another message of "there's no fucking hope, humanity is just a self-serving, power hungry race to oligarchy and fiefdom at the expense of everything else"  is just too much for my fragile imagination to bear at the moment.

It's not like I don't like complex films, or complex, conflicted characters - I usually love those types of films. But characters need to have some consistency. Maybe it was that it spent so much time on frivolities (how to catch a worm) and then skipped through the key moments too quickly "oh shit we have nukes".

The final battle had no tension, it was all over with a sweep - they just walked in and took over - WTF?

I dunno. I guess I just didn't learn anything new about myself, or about humanity. Maybe the source material is showing its age and to stay at all true to the book, it was constrained in some areas?

It's a shame I can't stand reading sci-fi/fantasy as I think I'd like the books more....

Oldmanmatt

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • At this rate, I probably won’t last the week.
  • Posts: 7164
  • Karma: +370/-17
  • Largely broken. Obsolete spares and scrap only.
    • The Boulder Bunker climbing centre
Even Paul feared himself and the Jihad. Trying very hard to avoid his “fate”.
The Messiah book is a much harder read, though.
Probably knowing the books too well, leads to filling in the bits the movies glossed over. So, I didn’t view it as glorifying war.
I suspect Herbert wanted to point out that human nature makes it “Hobson’s Choice” (just to drop another movie reference in there, as well as the 16th C pondering on the lack of true alternatives). Damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

Will Hunt

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Superworm is super-long
  • Posts: 8029
  • Karma: +636/-117
    • Unknown Stones
I think you've overthought it, Fultonius. Big worms, big booms, lots of sand, Hans Zimmers score and cool vocals. It doesn't need to mean anything more.

Bradders

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Posts: 2817
  • Karma: +135/-3
Frank Herbert definitly tried to trick people into routing for a messianic figure, then showing how dangerous they are. This is  a hard task and in my humble opinion, Herbert mostly failed. I thought Villeneuve was quite a bit closer to succeeding, mostly by blaiming mom for the son's choices and by inserting a Mary Sue.

No one is leaving the movie theater thinking that a galaxy-spanning Jihad is just? No?

I think you're overestimating people. Both of the friends I went to see it with hadn't twigged until I mentioned it, neither having read the books.

Personally, going into it with that thought in my mind helped me, and I thought it puts Timothee Chalamet's performance into context. Much as I instinctively dislike him I thought he was excellent, with his inspiration having an edge of menace and evil.

But yeah, I really wasn't looking to come out of it having learned anything :lol:

Wellsy

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Posts: 1459
  • Karma: +105/-11
I appreciated that the movie made it much clearer than the book that this is A Terrible Idea that will be Extremely Horrible

Fultonius

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Posts: 4361
  • Karma: +143/-3
  • Was strong but crap, now weaker but better.
    • Photos
I appreciated that the movie made it much clearer than the book that this is A Terrible Idea that will be Extremely Horrible

I wonder if those who've read to booked saw it in a different light, knowing what was going to unfold?

For me the descent into "the dark side" just seemed a bit parachuted into the end but maybe I just missed cues....

seankenny

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Posts: 1032
  • Karma: +117/-12
Civil War

A near-future America is - for reasons left very vague - undergoing a civil war, pitting an alliance of Texas and California, plus a rebellious Florida, against what's left of the federal government. The film follows a group of reporters as they travel from New York to Washington, in an attempt to interview the president before the expected fall of the government. The first two thirds of the story is a brutal road trip through a fragmented, militia-run landscape, the final third is a war movie of high intensity urban combat. It's really well done, very tense in places, looks great and some good performances.

But... as a film about journalists, it's really off. The reporters are just all wrong - too reckless and crazy. I've worked with plenty of reporters covering conflict and most of them are pretty sober and quite geeky. The print reporter in Civil War doesn't do one interview the entire time, what are Reuters paying this guy for?! Alex Garland clearly spent too much time watching Apocalypse Now and playing first person shooters, but it's still a decent movie despite my gripes.

tommytwotone

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Southern jessie turned Almscliff devotee
  • Posts: 3637
  • Karma: +200/-3
Bit niche, but Ghost Stories is currently on iPlayer.


It's co-written and stars Derren Brown collaborator Andy Nyman, and is a trilogy of three ghost stories which all come together at the end (can't say much more without spolier-ing). I'd seen it before so re-watched it last night, had forgotten how unsettling / genuinely scary in places it is.


There's also a scene in what looks like gritstone moorland with some boulders in the background - spent ages trying to place it!

Oldmanmatt

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • At this rate, I probably won’t last the week.
  • Posts: 7164
  • Karma: +370/-17
  • Largely broken. Obsolete spares and scrap only.
    • The Boulder Bunker climbing centre
Civil War

A near-future America is - for reasons left very vague - undergoing a civil war, pitting an alliance of Texas and California, plus a rebellious Florida, against what's left of the federal government. The film follows a group of reporters as they travel from New York to Washington, in an attempt to interview the president before the expected fall of the government. The first two thirds of the story is a brutal road trip through a fragmented, militia-run landscape, the final third is a war movie of high intensity urban combat. It's really well done, very tense in places, looks great and some good performances.

But... as a film about journalists, it's really off. The reporters are just all wrong - too reckless and crazy. I've worked with plenty of reporters covering conflict and most of them are pretty sober and quite geeky. The print reporter in Civil War doesn't do one interview the entire time, what are Reuters paying this guy for?! Alex Garland clearly spent too much time watching Apocalypse Now and playing first person shooters, but it's still a decent movie despite my gripes.

I rather took that second paragraph as the point. They were broken, lost, who were they reporting to anyway, anymore. A lifetime reporting on brutal conflicts abroad to their home audience, only to watch that audience descend into that same chaos. That psychotic militia man casually killing anything “other”, no longer the product of some imagined third world/racial depravity or poverty that happens “somewhere else”. So, they went looking for answers for their own fragile sanity. I don’t think we were meant to think they found those answers.

seankenny

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Posts: 1032
  • Karma: +117/-12
I’ve met plenty of people who have actually done all that stuff, they probably have some issues as a result of their work but they just aren’t as you describe them, or as the film portrays them. It’s not as if we have no examples of journalists reporting on their own civil wars, people are doing that every day, stretching right back to the American Civil War which saw recognisably modern journalism. A lot of people manage to remain relatively clear eyed throughout that process.

I don’t think a lot of journalists who cover foreign conflict type stories believe countries break because of “the product of some imagined third world/racial depravity” because if they did, they’d be rubbish at their jobs.

sherlock

Offline
  • ***
  • obsessive maniac
  • Posts: 490
  • Karma: +22/-0
Opus a film showing Ryuchi Sakamoto playing the piano.
Certainly not to everyone's taste but I was transfixed.
Mistakes, rueful smiles and grimaces  all captured in b/w.
He died shortly after the film was completed.
« Last Edit: April 19, 2024, 03:49:58 pm by sherlock »

TobyD

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Posts: 3846
  • Karma: +88/-3
  • Job offers gratefully accepted
Kong Skull Island , gloriously silly entertainment. Don't expect to be intellectually challenged but it is fun to watch. I wouldn't have gone to a cinema to see it, but since it's on Netflix, it's worth watching.

Falling Down

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Posts: 4896
  • Karma: +333/-4
    • bensblogredux
Thanks to whoever recommended The Holdovers (Andy?). What a lovely, brilliant film.

It did nothing to diminish my fantasy of having a couple of years as a tweedy academic teaching a very obscure subject at a rural American university.

Also checked the movie news this morning to find that Michael Mann is about to start shooting Heat 2 with Adam Driver as the young Neil McAuley. The book is really good so fingers crossed for the film.
« Last Edit: April 20, 2024, 11:54:53 am by Falling Down »

Moo

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Is an idiot
  • Posts: 1454
  • Karma: +84/-6
Butler as Shiherlis too, I was just talking with a mate the other day about him being perfect for that role as per the book.

seankenny

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Posts: 1032
  • Karma: +117/-12
Another recommendation for The Holdovers from me, an excellent film.

Wellsy

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Posts: 1459
  • Karma: +105/-11
Anyone seen Monkey Man? I'm seeing it this week, looks pretty good imo

TobyD

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Posts: 3846
  • Karma: +88/-3
  • Job offers gratefully accepted
Scoop is good I thought. If you are unaware it's the story of news night getting the Prince Andrew interview. Even though you've almost certainly seen the actual interview (or bits of it), it has a remarkable amount of tension. The cast and acting probably makes it.

Oldmanmatt

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • At this rate, I probably won’t last the week.
  • Posts: 7164
  • Karma: +370/-17
  • Largely broken. Obsolete spares and scrap only.
    • The Boulder Bunker climbing centre
Finch, which is on Apple TV. Tom Hanks on an oddly feel good post-apocalypse road trip.
Argylle, is amusing, if utterly daft, too.

teestub

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Posts: 2631
  • Karma: +172/-4
  • Cyber Wanker
Rebel Moon Part Two, as pretty looking and as terrible as the first, but now also featuring a coal fired space ship?! The amount of yes people around Snyder that allow this tripe through must be astounding; but it's been top 5 on Netflix for a couple of weeks, so I'm sure he'll be getting the cash to make another one.

kelvin

Offline
  • *****
  • forum hero
  • Posts: 1294
  • Karma: +60/-1
Rebel Moon Part Two, as pretty looking and as terrible as the first, but now also featuring a coal fired space ship?! The amount of yes people around Snyder that allow this tripe through must be astounding; but it's been top 5 on Netflix for a couple of weeks, so I'm sure he'll be getting the cash to make another one.

Switch your brain off type stuff and wait for the battle type movie.
The smoking shops had me puzzling tho, I could only think it was an extreme form of contrail conspiracy stuff to strike the fear into the hearts of the righteous below 🤷🏻‍♂️

Definitely could have been much better. Cheesy in parts. Great in others.

Not worth a second watch.

I went to see Dune w at the cinema three times for comparison.

 

SimplePortal 2.3.7 © 2008-2024, SimplePortal