Author Topic: Jon's Random Reviews  (Read 63136 times)

snowcat

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Re: Jon's Random Reviews
« Reply #120 on: January 25, 2010, 11:54:45 AM »
Hmm, interesting ive not seen the colour version... but id like to. Most people seem to think it kills the magic, Im going to have to have a look!

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Re: Jon's Random Reviews
« Reply #121 on: January 25, 2010, 12:57:58 PM »
I once watched She (1935) in the colorized version. Ray Harryhausen had watched over the process and pointed out that the film would have been made in color of it wasn't for budget restrictions (or so). After about 30min I absolutely couldn't take it anymore and reverted to the b&w version.

Najemikon

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Re: Jon's Random Reviews
« Reply #122 on: January 25, 2010, 07:47:28 PM »
I'm terribly sorry, but there's a point I should have made in the review. I do think the colourisation is brilliant, but much of its power is because it's Blu-Ray as well. It has the BR wow factor that can draw in a new audience and they've done it with respect. The outdoor daytime scenes especially. But Emma, if you've seen the original I'm sure you will find some of the magic is lost in the colours.

And this is what I should have said before. The colours are a novelty, aided by Blu-Ray, but the black and white version is given the HD treatment too and it is gorgeous, even if it's only a transfer and not a rescan. Such a deep, rich quality. It's the oldest film I have on Blu and I can see my upgrade bill being pricey if they continue down this route... :bag:

Here's an example, spoilerified only to protect the thread, because this image is almost life-size!  ;)

(click to show/hide)

snowcat

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Re: Jon's Random Reviews
« Reply #123 on: January 25, 2010, 07:49:26 PM »
I'm terribly sorry, but there's a point I should have made in the review. I do think the colourisation is brilliant, but much of its power is because it's Blu-Ray as well. It has the BR wow factor that can draw in a new audience and they've done it with respect. The outdoor daytime scenes especially. But Emma, if you've seen the original I'm sure you will find some of the magic is lost in the colours.

And this is what I should have said before. The colours are a novelty, aided by Blu-Ray, but the black and white version is given the HD treatment too and it is gorgeous, even if it's only a transfer and not a rescan. Such a deep, rich quality. It's the oldest film I have on Blu and I can see my upgrade bill being pricey if they continue down this route... :bag:

Here's an example, spoilerified only to protect the thread, because this image is almost life-size!  ;)

(click to show/hide)

Maybe.... ill have to take alook


..Jon, your spoiler does not work for me :(

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Offline Achim

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Re: Jon's Random Reviews
« Reply #125 on: January 26, 2010, 05:21:28 AM »
They seem to protect their images...

Here is their review page; it iseems impressive in direct comparison anyway.

Najemikon

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Re: Jon's Random Reviews
« Reply #126 on: January 26, 2010, 12:52:33 PM »
Thank you, sir.  :thumbup: Weird. It links fine for me.

Najemikon

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Royal Space Force: The Wings of Honnêamise *****
« Reply #127 on: March 06, 2010, 10:42:52 PM »
Royal Space Force: The Wings of Honnêamise
5 out of 5




Set on a world not unlike Earth, Shiro is a young man who wanted to join his country's air force, but directionless, instead finds himself in the ridiculed Royal Space Force. The bumbling Shiro is changed after meeting Riquinni, a caring girl who helps him find his spiritual centre. As we witness slacker Shiro and the hapless space force crew find new purpose, the corruption of the government conspires against the success of the launch, as the space race becomes fuel for war.

Ok, so my third reviewed Anime film is another 5 by 5! Along with Akira and Ghost In The Shell, it was one of the fundamentals of my early Anime obsession, plus I'm fascinated by aircraft, so it's all good for me. It is a beautiful film in both imagery and sentiment, and very eccentric, but balanced by meticulous detail in every frame. It is astonishing how the smallest things have been accounted for. The story is set in a parallel Earth, so it looks the same, but they have arrived at doing things differently and that attention to detail makes sure every one of those differences is convincing.

We know instinctively it is a parallel version of our own world, but a time is less obvious. 1950s, I’d guess, in line with our space race. Where it is set hardly matters, but it is possibly a play on Korea and the conflict between North and South. It is a well constructed background that supports all sorts of angles. Broadly speaking, the Royal Space Force is considered an expensive joke by almost everyone and is funded through corruption. When they do get to the point of having a rocket ready to send someone into space, the Government hijack it to incite their neighbours to war and end a stalemate, never for a moment thinking the rag-tag bunch might be able to pull it off.

That goes for the young members of the Force too, who just mess around, disillusioned and expecting to be looking for a job any day. We follow one of these, Shiro as he meets Riquinni, a quiet young woman trying to preach to people about God. Although he is not a religious person, she captures his imagination and convinces him he should devote himself to his job because she insists it is important and wonderful. Fired up, when the General asks for a volunteer to be the first astronaut, he does so, shocking his friends. And the General actually, who despairs!

Although it sounds like a lot is going on, by concentrating on Shiro’s point of view, it is a small, simple, heartfelt notion; that he has found something he at least thinks is worthwhile and enthusiasm generates around him. It is a story told with gentle humour throughout and some action, especially at the end and in a sub-plot with the most fascinating hitman you’re likely to see!

Typically of Anime, it changes mood with confidence, so the backdrop of corruption and war, and the hard reality of Shiro and Riquinni’s awkward relationship feels very real, even when the overall tone is comedy. The supporting characters really sell it though, like the chief engineer who names all the engines like he would sons (leading to one of the funniest and saddest moments, demonstrating the easy shifts in tone), or an almost mute child in Riquinni’s care, whose sour expression made me laugh out loud! There is, however, one shift I was unsure of.
(click to show/hide)
The central message though is focused throughout and delivered perfectly in the ending, as this little group of oddballs endeavour to reach for the stars and dare to dream.

It is a marvellous film, with an optimism you should find infectious, selling an idea that could have been easily misjudged, but is open to all sorts of interpretation and rewards multiple viewings. The opening scene where Shiro’s voiceover talks of his dreams, and the final sublime sequence, is amongst the most effective I have seen.
(click to show/hide)
It also has fantastic sound design (look how the sound of crowds melts away, or the radio transmissions), except the music does jar a little for me. It seems a very 80s theme.

The DVD is nicely presented with a reversible cover, lots of artwork and a substantial booklet going into extraordinary detail on how it was made. I was disappointed in the dubbing though. Shiro’s English voice hit just the right tone at the start, but I quickly switched to the original Japanese and subs when everyone else started!

I really can’t think of another film to compare it with, apart from, bizarrely, Contact, but that’s in a broad sense (derided space mission and religious faith). I’m so glad I found it again. I loved it when I first saw it and I love it even more now. I couldn't really find a clip, but this is how it starts...


« Last Edit: March 06, 2010, 10:46:14 PM by Jon »

Offline dfmorgan

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Re: Jon's Random Reviews
« Reply #128 on: March 07, 2010, 12:32:57 AM »
 :thumbup: :thumbup:

Jon thank you for an excellent review.

Not too sure if you are aware but your 1st spoiler is the section that was cut from the UK Manga Video VHS release.

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Najemikon

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Re: Jon's Random Reviews
« Reply #129 on: March 07, 2010, 12:57:09 AM »
My pleasure. ;D And no, I didn't know that scene had been cut. Explains why I was so surprised by it. I'd never seen it before!   :-[

Critter

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Re: Jon's Random Reviews
« Reply #130 on: March 07, 2010, 01:03:48 AM »
I have seen so many people reviewing this one here, I really should try get my hands on it. I haven't seen it on the anime section of my DVD store but I can probably order it in.

Najemikon

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Re: Jon's Random Reviews
« Reply #131 on: March 07, 2010, 02:42:49 AM »
You've as good a chance as anyone, because the Aussie DVD which I have is the only reasonably priced one. Are you still avoiding shopping online, though Critter? Chaosmusic have always been reliable on R4s for me...

Critter

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Re: Jon's Random Reviews
« Reply #132 on: March 07, 2010, 08:15:19 AM »
I really only avoided online becuase I didn't really have the means. My Mum wouldn't let me use her credit card. I now have my own card that I am able to use online but I am still a bit apprehensive to use it until I get a job.

Najemikon

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Rachel Getting Married ***
« Reply #133 on: May 18, 2010, 09:55:44 PM »
Rachel Getting Married
3 out of 5


When Kym (Anne Hathaway) returns to the Buchman family home for the wedding of her sister Rachel (Rosemarie DeWitt), she brings a long history of personal crisis, family conflict and tragedy along with her. The wedding couple's abundant party of friends and relations have gathered for a joyful weekend of feasting, music and love, but Kym – with her biting one-liners and flair for bombshell drama – is a catalyst for long-simmering tensions in the family dynamic. Filled with the rich and eclectic characters that remain a hallmark of Jonathan Demme's films, RACHEL GETTING MARRIED paints a heartfelt, perceptive and sometimes hilarious family portrait.

I've found Rachel Getting Married pretty tough to give a fair rating to. While it's quality is beyond reproach and it can ultimately be seen as a very adult film with a purpose and superb craftmanship, I disliked it immensely!

I largely agree with Matthias' review and while I can't go as far as saying it could have been the film of 2008, it's certainly in the upper tier, with first and foremost a very good cast delivering a well judged script, although I will say it is predictable and oft convenient. Jonathan Demme's documentary experience though gives the handheld style sharp relevance and realism. It's easy to dismiss it as "shaky cam", but this is no gimmick. It's organic and Cinema Verite at it's finest for some time and the atmosphere is tangible. As a whole, there are no gimmicks and everything is absolutely convincing and honestly told. Which may be part of the problem.

My problem with the film is I simply did not like anyone in it! I cannot stomach that family who are so far up their own collective arse, the only noise they can make is incessant whining. If I was at that wedding, I would scream in frustration. I mean, they chant the bride and grooms names as they enter the ceremony; they have dishwasher filling races; they sing to each other. It's all very bloody bohemian, I'm sure, but I was struck with the feeling that this is the sort of class in a classless society that can afford to be bohemian (they wear Saris, yet none of them are actually Indian, so far as I could tell). They can also afford therapy, another refuge of the well-off.

That's unfair of me though. I don't fully understand what seems to be an accepted and encouraged practice in America. Kymmie (Hathaway) is clearly a deserving case, but it's pushed so front and centre to be taken for granted by her and her family. The fact the Best Man happens to go as well, plus the sodding hairdresser even, just shows how much so! In the UK we probably have too much of a "just get on with it and stop whinging" attitude, but still, I know one person who went to a psychiatrist, and I was only told in absolute confidence. One. Kymmie talks about it openly, meets two fellow sufferers by accident and her sister is in training, it's so prevalent. Different world. :shrug: I should point out, the script does note the ironies and addresses them very cleverly (the hairdresser mentions briefly not being able to get the level of help Kym had, which is a sobering thought). It should be funny how touchy-feely everyone is, yet they get nowhere until its almost too late. If I was enjoying the film more, I would have appreciated it better.

But, on a lighter note, I'm alienated further by the way they speak. The script is well written, but the characters practice lazy sarcasm. A sentence doesn't seem complete without a raised eye here and a "what-ev-errr" there. It's said that sarcasm is the lowest form of wit. Only by people who can't use it properly, I say!

I did find the story predictable, but then we have this sort of stuff on TV every night in soap operas, which while they err on the side of short lived sensationalism, are also very well produced, written and acted. I don't like Eastenders, but I can identify with the people in it far easier than this lot.

Anne Hathaway gives a brilliant performance of the best character and she frequently kept me watching and not pressing fast-forward. Kym just needs a bloody good slap though, which would be duly delivered if the story was set in the UK! Empire's review first got me interested in the film as it led me to imagine a less realistic dialogue that lent itself to pithy one-liners as Kym acts as a cat amongst the pigeons of her family, but the truth is, it's too realistic to be any fun. That's clearly the aim and in the end, it's my fault, but this is not a film for everyone.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2010, 11:55:48 PM by Jon »

Offline Antares

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Re: Jon's Random Reviews
« Reply #134 on: May 18, 2010, 11:43:26 PM »
I'm in total agreement with you on this. My wife and I saw this in the theater and we both were left feeling a little empty at the end. Didn't care about the characters and the extended wedding scene was insufferable.