Author Topic: DCO third annual November Alphabet Marathon - discussion/review/banter thread  (Read 93844 times)

Offline addicted2dvd

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Re: DCO third annual November Alphabet Marathon - discussion/review/banter threa
« Reply #225 on: November 23, 2009, 01:18:47 AM »
Sorry Pete, good or not it's number 13 of 40 in the Fox Studio Classics collection. It's sgoing to sit on the shelf between numbers 12 and 14 until I rid myself of all the shiny little discs. I can't have a hole in my collection! :fingerchew:

 :laugh: Quite Alright Rick! :)
Pete

Offline Rogmeister

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Re: DCO third annual November Alphabet Marathon - discussion/review/banter thread
« Reply #226 on: November 23, 2009, 01:47:05 AM »


Jesse James  (1939)   105m
Directed by Henry King
Produced by Darryl F. Zanuck
Cast: Tyrone Power, Henry Fonda, Randolph Scott, Nancy Kelly, Henry Hull, Brian Donlevy, Donald Meek, John Carradine

This is one of the earlier film treatments (possibly the first?) on the life of famed outlaw Jesse James and his brother Frank.  Jesse is played here by Tyrone Power with his brother Frank played by Henry Fonda.  Randolph Scott plays a lawman sympathetic to Jesse named Will Wright (I imagine this character is a fictional one).  In this version, the darstardly no-good villains that are the railroad turn Jesse into an outlaw by taking his land and killing his mother by tossing a bomb into his home, planning on getting him but killing his mother instead, the only one inside at the time (Jesse's mom is played by Jane Darwell).  This is a typical Hollywood romanticized version of the James saga with not a lot of credibility to it but it is entertaining.  The film is shot in Technicolor but the close-ups of Jesse and Frank make them look soft and angelic, not quite the image you expect of noted killers and robbers.  For that matter, we don't really see that many of the James' gang's robberies...we basically see one train robbery and one failed bank job though we do get a collage of scenes at one point that do give you the idea there was a lot more to it.  This film proved to be immensely popular and a sequel was released about a year later.  Of course, Jesse couldn't return to life so it was about his brother...Henry Fonda starred in The Return of Frank. James.

 :D

Offline Rick

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Re: DCO third annual November Alphabet Marathon - discussion/review/banter threa
« Reply #227 on: November 23, 2009, 01:56:24 AM »
Sorry Pete, good or not it's number 13 of 40 in the Fox Studio Classics collection. It's sgoing to sit on the shelf between numbers 12 and 14 until I rid myself of all the shiny little discs. I can't have a hole in my collection! :fingerchew:

 :laugh: Quite Alright Rick! :)

Somehow I knew you would understand  :laugh:
Rick

Offline Rich

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Re: DCO third annual November Alphabet Marathon - discussion/review/banter thread
« Reply #228 on: November 23, 2009, 02:43:20 AM »


Title: North by Northwest

Runtime:136
Certificate:NR
Year:1959
Genres:Suspense/Thriller, Adventure, Classic

Plot:Cary Grant teams with director Alfred Hitchcock for the fourth and final time in this superlative espionage caper judged one of the American Film Institute's Top-100 Films and spruced up with a new digital transfer and remixed Dolby Digital Stereo. He plays a Manhattan advertising executive plunged into a realm of spy (James Mason) and counterspy (Eva Marie Saint) and variously abducted, framed for murder, chased and in another signature set piece, crop-dusted. He also holds on for dear life from the facial features of the Presidents on Mount Rushmore (backlot sets were used). But don't expect the Master of Suspense to leave star or audience hanging.

My Review:
Of all my recent Hitchcock films watched recently, this one I found the hardest to sit through without distraction.
It is unnecessarily long, if the various action, intrigue and romance had been filtered into a shorter offering it may have held my interest more.
The acting is good, Grant is convincing and suave in the lead, Saint is wholesome enough to attract (although the slutty first meeting on train was unbelievable). Mason of course is professional, but Landau didn't work for me.
Plenty of famous landmarks and milking the 'innocent accused theme' so common in Hitch's films. The best scenes are clearly the most infamous - the crop dusting plane, and the Rushmore finale, but unfortunately there are several beyond belief or poorly shot moments which are unusual in his work.
NBN is a well directed suspense/chase movie, but tediously dull in too many parts to give it a good mark.
My Rating
 :-\


Offline Rick

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Re: DCO third annual November Alphabet Marathon - discussion/review/banter threa
« Reply #229 on: November 23, 2009, 02:44:36 AM »


Pat and Mike

Hollywood Legends:
Spencer Tracy
Audrey Hepburn


Overview:
The sun will sneak by a rooster before sports promoter Mike Conovan (Spencer Tracy) lets opportunity pass him by. So the first time he sees genteel Pat Pemberton (Katharine Hepburn) swing a five-iron, he decides to ink her to a pro contract. "Not much meat on her," Mike later says, "but what's there is cherce."

For this chercest of romantic comedies, George Cukor directs, Ruth Gordon and Garon Kanin provide the Oscar®-nominated screenplay (1952) and a deft cast plays various Damon Runyonesque types, including Aldo Ray as a dim-bulb palooka and Charles (Bronson) Buchinski as a tough guy who finds Pat tougher. Sports stars of the day (like Babe Didrikson Zaharias and Gussie Moran) add to the Jocks-and-Jills fun. Let the games begin!

My Thoughts:
After the last movie I wanted to pick one I knew I would enjoy. How can you go wrong with a Hepburn & Tracy movie! I assumed this was another romantic comedy and was glad to see it was that and more. I had no idea how good of an athlete Audrey Hepburn was! She was fantastic. There was one tennis match where it looked as though they used a stand in (or not – hard to tell) but for the most part everything you saw was her. She was around 45 when they filmed this movie. I was absolutely impressed with her athleticism. The story itself was enjoyable, predictable and entertaining. I wonder how many takes they had to do to get some of those long puts in the golf scenes. There was a great scene where Audrey Hepburn beat up Charles Bronson. Pretty hysterical when you look at Bronson’s career since then!

As far as the acting goes, well… do I really need so say anything about it? The two of them have such a chemistry everything just falls into place naturally.

My Rating: ;D
Rick

Offline RossRoy

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Re: DCO third annual November Alphabet Marathon - discussion/review/banter thread
« Reply #230 on: November 23, 2009, 04:03:14 AM »
The Big Bang Theory: The Complete Second Season
WHAT THEY SAY
The science of funny is back! At work, physicists Leonard and Sheldon and their geek pals conquer the cosmos. At home, real life – from dating to driving – conquers them. This season, Leonard gets a girl. So does Sheldon. (Sheldon?!) Howard drives the Mars Rover into a ditch. Raj woos a terminator. Gorgeous girl-next-door Penny falls under the spell of Age of Conan. And super-smart, überconfident Leslie Winkler reduces mere men to spineless jellyfish. Twenty-three laugh-filled episodes from series creators Chuck Lorre (Two and a Half Men) and Bill Prady (Gilmore Girls) and a talented cast with astronomical comedy I.Q.s show why Big Bang is such a big hit.

MY THOUGHTS
This show cracks me up! Funniest sitcom I've seen in a long time!

This season is even better than the first! I love how instead of going the "usual" route - bigger bolder badder - they actually centered on them even more, and brought to a more personal level.

I love seeing Penny and Sheldon interact. They each live in such a different "world". I also love how they have Penny "win" most of the arguments with Sheldon... yet Sheldon will always get the last word, even though Penny obviously won the argument.

I also like how there's an ongoing story thread. The characters are evolving, and the writers do leave breadcrumbs here and there, and then bring them up at crucial moments later in the season.

All the characters are growing on me, even Howard (love the episode where Penny tells him "the truth" - probably my favourite)!

The only bad I can think of on this show? The wait for Season 3 will be too loooooooooong.

RATING


Sébastien

When I want a kiss: I stare at you from a distance, sobbing uncontrollably, because I am ugly, and no one likes me.

Offline Rogmeister

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Re: DCO third annual November Alphabet Marathon - discussion/review/banter thread
« Reply #231 on: November 23, 2009, 05:53:36 AM »


The Return of Frank James (1940)  92m
Directed by Fritz Lang
Produced by Darryl F. Zanuck
Cast: Henry Fonda, Gene Tierney, Jackie Cooper, Henry Hull, John Carradine, Donald Meek

This movie takes up where Jesse James, released the previous year, left off...with Bob Ford's killing of Jesse.  In fact, at the beginning of this new film, Frank hasn't even heard of Jesse's death yet...but he soon finds out and then makes getting even with Ford his top priority.  Despite the fact that this is a sequel to the earlier film, the tone of the two films are completely different, not surprising since they have different directors.  This film has not the romanticism of the earlier film or even the manic personality Jesse possessed in that film.  Here we have no real identity other than a straightforward western with Fonda as Frank James first going after Ford and then being captured and being put on trial.  Once the trial is over he goes after Ford but doesn't even get his revenge as Ford apparently shoots himself rather than face Frank himself and we have a sort of happy ending.  The photography is good with excellent use of outdoor locales though one scene is almost comical in its use of rear process photography when we get closeups of men riding horses...except they are not bouncing up and down in the close-ups as actual riders would be doing.  But that's a small quibble.  Though not as strong as Jesse James, I still enjoyed The Return of Frank James:)

Offline Rich

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Re: DCO third annual November Alphabet Marathon - discussion/review/banter thread
« Reply #232 on: November 23, 2009, 07:56:40 PM »


Title: FrenZy

Runtime:116
Certificate:R
Year:1972
Genres:Suspense/Thriller

Plot:In modern-day London, a sex criminal known as the Necktie Murderer has the police on alert, and in typical Hitchcock fashion, the trail is leading to an innocent man, who must now elude the law and prove his innocence by finding the real murderer. Jon Finch, Alec McCowen and Barry Foster head this British cast in the thriller that alternates suspense scenes with moments of Hitchcock's distinctive black humor. Screenplay by Anthony Shaffer.

My Review:
There are huge chunks of Hitch under the surface of this movie - wrong man, comedy couple, suspense, intrigue, good pace, showdown scene etc. But there are some elements that just didn't fit right, full frontal nudity, rape scene, swearing, boobs aplenty etc. and I wonder if he was forced to add these into the film to satisfy the more liberated 70's audience, or what he wished to view as an ageing man?
As a standalone film without analysing too deeply it was really enjoyable, the script was quality, and the black comedy elements eased the serial killer heaviness of the film. The casting was good with several now famous British actors making early small appearances, although I didn't spot Hitch in this one?
I expected not to enjoy this, but was pleasantly surprised that such a quality piece was delivered as his penultimate film.
My Rating
 :D


Offline Rich

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Re: DCO third annual November Alphabet Marathon - discussion/review/banter thread
« Reply #233 on: November 23, 2009, 08:09:58 PM »


Title: PsyCho

Runtime:108
Certificate:R
Year:1960
Genres:Suspense/Thriller, Horror

Plot:Alfred Hitchcock's masterpiece of the macabre stars Anthony Perkins as the troubled Norman Bates, whose "old dark house" and adjoining motel are not the place to spend a quiet evening. No one knows that better than Janet Leigh, the film's ill-fated heroine who is victimized in the now-notorious "shower scene." Vera Miles, Martin Balsam, John Gavin and John McIntire co-star in Hitchcock's most compelling and terrifying film. Screenplay by Joseph Stefano.

My Review:
I saved the best til last of my Hitchcock films, one I have seen a few times and really enjoy, and which still in places makes the hairs on the back of my neck go up and my arms get goosebumps.
This to me is the first true scary film, everything since has been an attempt to match its absolutely perfect suspense, psychological tension, storyline, choreography and pace. The less is more gore aspect appeals to me, the innovative camera angles, and the way Hitch twists it so as a viewer you begin to side with Norman against the authorities is masterful.
Excellent acting, perfect dialogue, plausible characters, Hitch's greatest movie and a masterpiece I shall never tire of.
My Rating
 :thumbup:


Offline Jon

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Young Master (Shi di chu ma) **
« Reply #234 on: November 23, 2009, 08:52:07 PM »
Young Master (Shi di chu ma)
2 out of 5




When two rival martial arts schools square off in an annual lion dance competition, the favourite, betrayed by their star pupil, Tiger (Wei Pei), exits in disgrace. When Tiger is expelled and joins with a notorious gang of criminals, led by feared kicking expert Master Kim (Wong In-sik), Dragon (Jackie Chan) embarks on a dangerous mission to bring his 'brother' back to the school. Unfortunately, the situation is further complicated when he is mistaken for his criminal brother, and must fight to clear his name, while continually on the run from both the local police and the criminal gang. Unknown to Dragon, the ultimate challenge awaits him: a deadly one-on-one encounter with the formidable Master Kim. Filled with intricate, masterfully choreographed action sequences, clever sight-gags and fluid camerawork, this timeless classic broke all Hong Kong box-office records on its original theatrical release, and is still, today, one of the top-grossing Jackie Chan movies of all time!

I've always enjoyed classic martial arts movies, especially those with the two masters, Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan. The plots of their films are usually similar, especially the earliest ones, but their styles very different. Chan is an acrobatic circus performer, so his films usually have a huge dose of slapstick comedy (he is definitely China's Chaplin) including the fights. You should watch his movies for fun and astonishing stunts.

Young Master, incorrectly thought of as Chan's debut as a director, is not a good place to start. It's worth seeing, but it is tedious. The comedy is just too silly, the dialogue horrendous (although that could be down to poor subtitling) and the fights just go on too long. And in these early films the emphasis was on a very structured style often using props that might be clever, but becomes annoying. Chan is amazing with a fan, long-time collaborator Yuen Baio equally so with a bench, but every one of them needs a kick up the arse, so to speak!

What especially annoyed me was the sequence in the middle where Master Kim (Wong In-Sik) is freed from custody. It is superb! Exciting and brutal. It's all Chan's work though and he does a couple of the harder stunts, so he proves he could have injected the rest of the film with a bit more vigour. The final one-on-one with In-Sik could have been a really good brawler. It was known for being one of the longest fight sequences filmed so far at about 15 minutes. That's 10 too long, sadly.

Ah, well. I'll have to have a marathon of proper Chan movies, like Project A or Dragon's Forever.
« Last Edit: November 23, 2009, 08:54:50 PM by Jon »
Jon
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Offline Emma

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Re: DCO third annual November Alphabet Marathon - discussion/review/banter threa
« Reply #235 on: November 23, 2009, 09:23:07 PM »
The young master is a strange one :S myself and a Chinese friend  (he also speaks Chinese :p) watched it, I agree that there is poor subbing... he was laughing all the way through it ¬_¬ ... I was sitting there like :S "what?"

Offline Rich

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Re: DCO third annual November Alphabet Marathon - discussion/review/banter thread
« Reply #236 on: November 23, 2009, 10:34:33 PM »


Title: Milk

Runtime:122
Certificate:15
Year:2008
Genres:Drama

Plot:His life changed history. His courage changed lives. Academy Award® winner Sean Penn stars in this stirring celebration of Harvey Milk, a true man of the people. Based on the inspiring true story of the first openly gay man elected to major public office, this compelling film follows Milk’s powerful journey to inspire hope for equal rights during one of the least tolerant times in the history of the U.S.
With a stunning all-star cast, including Josh Brolin, Emile Hirsch, Diego Luna and James Franco, it’s the emotionally charged story that now has global recognition and critical acclaim.
My Review:
Fascinating biopic of a courageous man, who stood up not only for himself and his beliefs, but for those beliefs and rights of his fellow citizens, and was so tragically murdered with his supportive mayor by an unexpected assassin.
Penn is simply brilliant in this, he is surely one of the best actors of our generation? His sympathetic portrayal of Milk, a flawed, complex workaholic with personal relationship disasters aplenty, is refreshingly open and never tries to portray the civic leader as any kind of saint. Some of the supporting cast do not seem quite so sexually comfortable in their roles as gay activists, but the film, with the backdrop of Harvey narrating his 'just in case' memoirs to a tape recorder, is so smoothly paced and of overall interest that you can excuse the odd poor performance.
A painful journey, and a tearful ending, but a great educational and entertaining movie to inspire hope.
My Rating
 ;D


Offline Jon

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Re: DCO third annual November Alphabet Marathon - discussion/review/banter threa
« Reply #237 on: November 24, 2009, 12:46:31 AM »
The young master is a strange one :S myself and a Chinese friend  (he also speaks Chinese :p) watched it, I agree that there is poor subbing... he was laughing all the way through it ¬_¬ ... I was sitting there like :S "what?"

You should hear the dubbed version! They're done with strong British accents. It's just weird! ???

Chan has a very cheeky old-fashioned British style of humour though, like the bath scene in Young Master. Have you seen some of the ones he did with the other Little Dragons, Yuen Baio and Sammo Hung? A couple of them are like Carry On films with a very silly cast of Chinese comedians, including Eric Tsang.
Jon
"NOBODY MOVE! I dropped me brain."
Catch up with reviews and news at my blog,

Offline Rich

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Re: DCO third annual November Alphabet Marathon - discussion/review/banter thread
« Reply #238 on: November 24, 2009, 12:46:41 AM »


Title: What Just Happened

Runtime:104
Certificate:R
Year:2008
Genres:Comedy

Plot:Based on the acclaimed, best-selling memoir by veteran Hollywood producer Art Linson and directed by Academy Award® winning Barry Levinson, What Just Happened follows Ben (Robert De Niro), a producer desperately trying to save his two films from falling apart while managing the chaos of two marriages that already have. A bitingly sharp comedy about what it takes to survive a treacherous world of backstabbing, greed, and runaway egos - Welcome to Hollywood!

My Review:
Dull and self-indulgent, an unfunny comedy, that seemed like an in-joke the rest of us would never get. By Linson lassoing onboard a couple of his regular big name stars in Penn and DeNiro, he must of hoped he could slip this drivel under an audiences nose without them smelling how bad it is.
Disjointed, erratically paced, a mismatch of storylines full of splitting seams, pointless scenes to demonstrate his busy life, stupid episodes with Bruce Willis and a beard - WTF was this film trying to portray?? An attempted satire that falls flat on its face, and should be kicked into the gutter and ignored at all cost.
What Just Happened is a great title, it was exactly how I felt as the credits rolled!
My Rating
 :yawn:


« Last Edit: November 24, 2009, 12:48:46 AM by Rich »

Offline RossRoy

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Re: DCO third annual November Alphabet Marathon - discussion/review/banter thread
« Reply #239 on: November 24, 2009, 04:47:32 AM »
Masters of the Universe
WHAT THEY SAY
Planet Eternia and the Castle of Greyskull are under threat from the evil Skeletor, who wants to take over the planet. A group of Freedom Fighters led by the heroic He-Man are accidentally transported to Earth by a mysterious Cosmic Key which holds the power to make Skeletor all-powerful. Once on Earth, He-Man joins alliances with two teenagers as they attempt to find the key and return home.

MY THOUGHTS
I thought I had never seen this movie before. But something felt really familiar right from the start. Some scenes were too familiar to be just a coincidence. And then it hit me, when you see Man-At-Arms, Gwildor and Teela eating at the chicken restaurant! Yes, I had seen this movie before!

Anyway... I don't know what to say really. I didn't strike me as particularly good, but I wasn't bored with it. It was fun and entertaining, but gosh are the effects second-rate! But, I thought Frank Langella did a great job as Skeletor. It's obvious the whole movie is kind of limited, but Langella did a great job with what he had to work with.

So yeah, the movie's got a lot going for it - blatant plot holes, cheesy effects, bad acting, steroid-induced muscles - yeah, its got it all! ;)

RATING


Sébastien

When I want a kiss: I stare at you from a distance, sobbing uncontrollably, because I am ugly, and no one likes me.