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Author Topic: DCO third annual November Alphabet Marathon - discussion/review/banter thread  (Read 51206 times)
Jon
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« Reply #90 on: November 07, 2009, 04:43:38 PM »

No, I haven't missed any, despite seemingly jumping to "G". I hadn't got any unwatched starting with "E", so I picked one that had got a lot of them!  Wink
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« Reply #91 on: November 07, 2009, 04:53:17 PM »

The Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer
3 out of 5




"Invisible Woman" Sue Storm and "Mr Fantastic" Dr. Reed Richards are about to be married when a mysterious alien the Silver Surfer crashes the proceedings and heralds Earth's impending destruction. With time running out, the Fantastic Four must use all their powers in a thrilling race to save the planet.

Unencumbered by lumpy origins, real-world logic and subscribing unashamedly to Marvel logic, Tim Story gets to concentrate on Four Fantastic characters built up over decades of comic book lore. It is so faithful this is actually one of the best comic book adaptations yet. In the stories, they share the universe with Spider-Man, who in turn has been teamed with the X-Men as well. Both those franchises contain better, more exciting, more ambitious movies, but both also fail when they try to invest the inherently silly plots with too much serious drama.

Despite improving on the first Fantastic Four, this sequel still plays out like a soap opera, complete with cheesy dialogue, half-arsed plot-lines and basic characters to form a family unit, but it sort of works better this time. Bring in b-movie origin powers that get away with the barest-to-none explanation (Stan Leeís whole philosophy) and it turns into a lot of fun.
 
Michael Chiklis is hilarious as The Thing. His banter with Chris Evanís Johnny Storm might be what keeps you coming back. Reed Richards (Ioan Gruffudd) and Sue Storm (impossibly cute and impossibly tanned Jessica Alba) are a bit wet, but still have fun, but then Stan Lee always did have a very soppy centre! Julian McMahon returns as Dr. Doom and is ok, but surplus to requirements.

Then we get Norrin Radd, The Silver Surfer himself. Whatever else you think of this film, he is a superb realisation. He looks cool, he sounds cool (voiced by Laurence Fishburne, acted by Doug Jones, could he be less?) and he gives us the filmís best set-pieces. Dig a little, there isnít much to him, but he comes with built-in gravitas so the story works on the contrast between him and the colourful Four. Thereís even less to Galactus; Tim Story wisely reduces the planet Destroyer to a big cloud. Anything else would have looked daft and caused fan-boy rage!

If Superman and The Dark Knight remain the closest to the DC ideology, then The Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer has to be closest to Marvelís. Itís fast, frothy, kiddie-centric fun that adults will enjoy too, if they let themselves. Just like the comics. At less than 90 minutes, itís worth a punt and I enjoyed it far more than I thought I would. A third instalment would be welcome, because I think there is a niche for this type of superhero movie.

The DVD is disappointing though. Effects wise, the film is inconsistent (Surfer is fantastic; Reedís stretchy face, not so much), but the image quality seems flat throughout. The packaging said there was a free Frisbee included. I didnít get one Sad, but perhaps they meant the disc! It might be one for Blu-Ray, as reviews are very good.
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« Reply #92 on: November 07, 2009, 05:08:14 PM »

I liked the first Fantastic Four movie...enough to see it twice in the theater.  I haven't seen this one but I have the DVD but I note mine has a different cover.  Mine is billed as "The Power Cosmic Edition".  I'll have to check it out soon.  Maybe someday I'll watch the two FF films together...then again, maybe not since it hasn't been that long since I last saw the first one.  I guess there's never going to be another FF movie, right?
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« Reply #93 on: November 07, 2009, 05:23:27 PM »

I liked the first Fantastic Four movie...enough to see it twice in the theater.  I haven't seen this one but I have the DVD but I note mine has a different cover.  Mine is billed as "The Power Cosmic Edition".  I'll have to check it out soon.  Maybe someday I'll watch the two FF films together...then again, maybe not since it hasn't been that long since I last saw the first one.  I guess there's never going to be another FF movie, right?

According to Rewind, yours is comparable, if not identical, to the two disc edition that is available in the UK. I have the boxset of both films as it was only about £3.99! But they are the single-disc editions. Still quite generous on extras though.

Glad to hear you enjoyed the first one. You should definitely like this one too. Sadly, a previously mooted part 3 seems dead, but Fox have recently announced another one, using the dreaded word "reboot".

There is also the possibility of a Silver Surfer spin-off (another thing Fox has a penchant for, as well as misunderstanding the appeal of the character). All talked about on Wikipedia
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« Reply #94 on: November 08, 2009, 10:45:47 AM »



Title: Umrao Jaan
Year: 2006
Director: J.P. Dutta
Rating: FSK-12
Length: 188 Min.
Video: Anamorphic Widescreen 2.35
Audio: German: Dolby Digital 5.1, Hindi: Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: German

Stars:
Aishwarya Rai
Shabana Azmi
Suneil Shetty
Abhishek Bachchan
Bikram Saluja

Extras:
Scene Access

My Thoughts:
A remake of an Indian classic. It is a really boring movie. The three hour running time is too much for the story. They could have easily told the same in one hour. The two stars (famous Bollywood couple Aishwarya Rai and Abhishek Bachchan) were okay, but the acting of most of the supporting cast was amateurish. Would be interesing to see the original with Rekha, but I haven't found a decent DVD release of that one.

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« Reply #95 on: November 08, 2009, 10:52:48 AM »



Title: Monsters vs. Aliens
Year: 2009
Director: Conrad Vernon, Rob Letterman
Rating: FSK-6
Length: 95 Min.
Video: Widescreen 2.35
Audio: English: Dolby Digital TrueHD, German: Dolby Digital 5.1, French: Dolby Digital 5.1, Italian: Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1, Turkish: Dolby Digital 5.1, Portuguese: Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English, German, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, Turkish

Stars:
Reese Witherspoon
Seth Rogen
Hugh Laurie
Will Arnett
Kiefer Sutherland

Plot:
The world's most unlikely heroes are on a mission to save Earth in Dreamworks Animations's MONSTERS VS ALIENS

Ginormica, Dr. Cockroach Ph D, The Missing Link, Insectosaurous and B.O.B. join forces to fight back when aliens attack. With amazing animation and an all-star voice cast including Reese Witherspoon, Seth Rogen, Hugh Laurie and Keifer Sutherland, this ginormous adventure is MONSTER SMASH ... THERE'S SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE.

Extras:
Commentary
Deleted Scenes
Featurettes
Music Videos
Scene Access

My Thoughts:
I did watch this one at the theatres in 3D. I still enjoyed it just as much this time around. It has fun and likable characters and a fun story. Too bad that they didn't put the movie additionally as 3D on this Blu-ray (they did this with Coraline). There is a bonus short which they put on as 3D. Although the 3D for home cinema is far from the current technology in the theatres, I was surprised how good the effect can still be archieved on a television. Only the colors are horrorable because of the green/red filtering.

Rating:
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« Reply #96 on: November 08, 2009, 10:58:46 AM »



Title: X-Men Origins: Wolverine
Year: 2009
Director: Gavin Hood
Rating: FSK-16
Length: 107 Min.
Video: Widescreen 2.35
Audio: English: DTS HD Master Audio, French: DTS 5.1, German: DTS 5.1, Commentary: Dolby Digital Stereo, Commentary: Dolby Digital Stereo
Subtitles: Commentary, Dutch, English, French, German

Stars:
Hugh Jackman
Liev Schreiber
Danny Huston
Will.I.Am
Lynn Collins

Plot:
Superstar Hugh Jackman attacks the role of Wolverine once again with a vengeance! This pulse-pounding action thriller sinks razor-sharp adamantium claws into the mysterious origins of Wolverine: his epically violent and romantic past, his complex relationship with Sabertooth (Liev Schreiber), and the ominous Weapon X program that unleashes his primal fury. Along the way, Wolverine also encounters legendary new mutants, including Deadpool (Ryan Reynolds) and Gambit (Taylor Kitsch). Get ready for this deeper, darker, more-spectacular-than-ever chapter of teh X-Men saga!

Awards:
Scream Awards2009NominatedBest CameoPatrick Stewart
Scream Awards2009NominatedBest Comic Book Movie
Scream Awards2009NominatedBest Fantasy ActorHugh Jackman
Scream Awards2009NominatedBest Fantasy Movie
Scream Awards2009NominatedBest Sequel
Scream Awards2009WonBest SuperheroHugh Jackman
Scream Awards2009NominatedBest SuperheroTaylor Kitsch
Scream Awards2009WonBest Supporting ActorRyan Reynolds
Scream Awards2009NominatedBest Supporting ActorTaylor Kitsch
Scream Awards2009NominatedBest VillianLeiv Schreiber
Scream Awards2009NominatedBreakout Performance-MaleTaylor Kitsch
Scream Awards2009NominatedBreakout Performance-MaleWill.i.Am
Scream Awards2009NominatedFight-to-the-Death Scene of the Year"Logan and Victor vs. Weapon X":
Teen Choice Awards2009WonChoice Movie - Action Adventure
Teen Choice Awards2009WonChoice Movie Actor - Action/AdventureHugh Jackman
Teen Choice Awards2009NominatedChoice Movie Fresh Face - FemaleLynn Collins
Teen Choice Awards2009NominatedChoice Movie Fresh Face - MaleTaylor Kitsch
Teen Choice Awards2009NominatedChoice Movie Hissy FitHugh Jackman
Teen Choice Awards2009NominatedChoice Movie RumbleWolverine, Victor Creed vs. Weapon X
Teen Choice Awards2009NominatedChoice Movie VillainLiev Schreiber
Teen Choice Awards2009NominatedChoice Summer Male HottieTaylor Kitsch


Extras:
Commentary
Deleted Scenes
Digital Copy
Featurettes
Interviews
Live Lookup
Scene Access
X-View Modus

My Thoughts:
I was weary about this movie. Wolverine isn't exactly my favorite character in X-Men. This movie was okay though. Not as good as the first two X-Men movies, but probably on par with the third one. There is at least a lot of well-done action to be seen.

Rating:
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« Reply #97 on: November 08, 2009, 11:04:01 AM »



Title: LŚt Den Rštte Komma In
Year: 2008
Director: Tomas Alfredson
Rating: 15
Length: 118 Min.
Video: Widescreen 2.35
Audio: Swedish: DTS 5.1, Swedish: Dolby Digital 5.0, Commentary: Dolby Digital Stereo
Subtitles: English

Stars:
KŚre Hedebrant
Lina Leandersson
Per Ragnar
Henrik Dahl
Karin Bergquist

Plot:
Twelve year old Oskar is an outsider, struggling to fit in at school and left alone to fend for himself at home whilst his mother works nights. One evening he meets the mysterious Eli. As a sweet romance blossoms between them, Oskar learns to overcome his tormentors and discovers Eli's dark secret and the connections to the gruesome events occuring across town. Together they must help Eli be gone and live, or stay and die.

Brutal, bloody and tender, LET THE RIGHT ONE IN weaves friendship, rejection and loyalty into a disturbing and darkly atmospheric, yet poetic and unexpectedly tender tableau of adolescence.

Awards:
Fangoria Chainsaw Awards2009NominatedBest ActorKare Hedebrant
Fangoria Chainsaw Awards2009WonBest ActressLina Leandersson
Fangoria Chainsaw Awards2009WonBest Limited-Release/Direct-To-Video Film
Fangoria Chainsaw Awards2009WonBest ScoreJohan SŲderqvist
Fangoria Chainsaw Awards2009WonBest ScreenplayJohn Ajvide Lindqvist
Satellite Awards2008NominatedBest Motion Picture Ė Foreign Language
Saturn Awards2008NominatedBest Performance by a Younger ActorLina Leandersson
Saturn Awards2008NominatedBest WritingJohn Ajvide Lindqvist
Scream Awards2009NominatedBest DirectorTomas Alfredson
Scream Awards2009WonBest Foreign Movie
Scream Awards2009NominatedBest Horror ActorKare Hedebrant
Scream Awards2009NominatedBest Horror ActressLina Leandersson
Scream Awards2009NominatedBest Horror Movie
Scream Awards2009NominatedBest Scream-PlayJohn Ajvide Lindqvist
Scream Awards2009NominatedBreakout Performance-FemaleLina Leandersson
Scream Awards2009NominatedMost Memorable Mutilation"The Swimming Pool Scene":
Scream Awards2009NominatedThe "Holy Sh%t!" Scene of the Year"The Swimming Pool Scene":
Scream Awards2009NominatedThe Ultimate Scream
Young Artist Awards2009NominatedBest Performance in an International Feature Film Ė Leading Young PerformersKŚre Hedebrant, Lina Leandersson


Extras:
Commentary
Deleted Scenes
Photo Gallery

My Thoughts:
I have seen this movie at last year's FantasyFilmFest. It was the best movie I had seen there that year, which means a lot because I saw some great movies there.
This movie had surprised me then. I wasn't expecting liking it very much. Usually I do not like movies with such a slow pace. But this one was really great.

Rating:
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« Reply #98 on: November 08, 2009, 03:33:04 PM »

Get Smart
4 out of 5




Steve Carell is in CONTROL as Maxwell Smart, the novice agent often out of his depth but never out of options in this action comedy, pitting him against the nuclear scheme of the evil spy group KAOS. Anne Hathaway partners with Max as ever-capable Agent 99. And director Peter Segal (The Longest Yard) guides his stars (including Dwayne Johnson and Alan Arkin) through the dangerous realm of molar radios, multifunction pocketknives, exploding dental floss and more.

Iím not familiar with the original show, so I donít know how this stands up to it, but I really enjoyed Get Smart. The story is very light, daft and has been seen many times before in slightly different guises. Although itís more True Lies than Austin Powers, itís similar to both films in that the plot really doesnít matter in the slightest. Itís about Maxwell Smart and little more.

So much of the film rests on how much you are convinced by Steve Carell. I thought he was brilliant and this is a perfect role for him. What I found a pleasant surprise is that Carell doesnít play him as a complete idiot and his character is not treated as one. He makes mistakes and he thinks heís smoother than he is, but he is also resourceful and intelligent. His heart is in the right place and most of the time he pulls off his intentions. Heís like an accountant who thinks he could be James Bond; awkward he may be, but it doesnít stop him being right! The dead-pan scripting plays into his hands beautifully.

He needs help, mainly from the more typical Agents 23 (Dwayne Johnson) and 99 (Anne Hathaway). Hathaway is wonderful and brings some spark to what could have been a standard role. As does Johnson, continuing to prove his worth. He has such charming modest enthusiasm, you wonder if he just did the wrestling lark to get into movies, where he really belongs! Alan Arkin as the Chief fits in nicely too, sometimes stealing the film right from under Carellís nose and has great fun in scenes like the petulant scrap in the war room. I did like the undercurrent of playground tit-for-tat going on between Control and other Government agencies. Terence Stamp possibly has the most straightforward job as the villain, but his smooth delivery of insults to his goons is a joy in ways only he can do.

Itís a very smooth and shiny film, with plenty of action and even if it occasionally goes too silly, itíll keep you smiling throughout.



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« Reply #99 on: November 08, 2009, 03:56:24 PM »



Title: JCVD

Runtime:96
Certificate:15
Year:2008
Genres:Action

Plot:Washed-up, fighting bankruptcy and caught in the midst of a desperate struggle to win his daughter back from the jaws of a bitter custody battle, Van Damme unwittingly becomes embroiled in a dangerous bank robbery led by a gang of armed and violent criminals.
Trapped inside, Van Damme is framed for the robbery and the murder of innocent hostages. Now he must win the approval of the crowd as well as the trust of the police if he is to survive this deadly heist!
With a killer mix of action, murder, mayhem and no shortage of laughs JCVD delivers with the impact of a roundhouse kick to the face! Van Damme is back and this time heŅs taking no prisoners!

My Review:
Awful self-indulgent Van-Damme film, this actor has not made a decent film for several years and this rates down at the bottom of the heap.
The idea to promote JCVD as a vehicle to demonstrate the leads serious acting skills backfires, it becomes a slow and boring film heavy with dialogue, with a jumbled and disjointed plot, clumsy supporting characters, and uncomfortable soul revealing scenes. The few action scenes are miserably bad, and it looks like this 'star' has fallen to the level of Seagal in his later years. Damme shame.
The only decent part of watching this dvd was having a listen to the dubbed audio, which sounded like a pack of Inspector Clouseau's doing hammy French accents - very funny.
My Rating
 Yuck !

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« Reply #100 on: November 08, 2009, 04:41:05 PM »

Rich, you're giving me a sense of Deja Vu! Hadn't you already done JCVD somewhere?  Stars
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Jon
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« Reply #101 on: November 08, 2009, 04:43:39 PM »

The Hunter
4 out of 5




Steve McQueen's last movie shows the dynamic talent of the late, great actor in one of his most memorable roles: The true story of Ralph "Papa" Thorson, a modern day bounty hunter. Thorson's exploits are detailed as he pursues a number of fugitives who have skipped bail. The chase comes full circle when he becomes the quarry of a vengeful psychopath. McQueen's multi-dimensional performance as Thorson, a man born in the wrong age, is counterpoint to the explosive action in the The Hunter.

This is an unusual and original film, given some poignancy by it being both based on truth and Steve McQueenís final film. He is typically brilliant in it and shows what a huge loss cinema suffered on his death. Of course, his life could have been an action movie in its own right, so itís poetic that he plays a man like Ralph ďPapaĒ Thorson, who both lives up to and contradicts the action-man image.

ďPapaĒ was already a man out of his time as a Bounty Hunter, chasing down bail absconders. He lived a fascinating life, but while it is based on a book by Christopher Keane, this is no bio-pic. There is no illuminating arc about the manís life. So, you may assume itís the opposite. A typical, probably fictionalised action movie, perhaps a more serious version of Midnight Run, but it isnít that either!

While Iím sure much is fictionalised, itís laid back, unassuming and episodic, with no real perceptible plot. There are two elements that could be called such: his girlfriendís (Kathryn Harold, as Dotty) pregnancy forcing him to face up to the future and an ex-con looking for revenge, forcing him to deal with his past. If the film has a real weak point, itís in having to deal with that ex-con (character actor Tracey Walter) as it canít help but be a bit predictable.

Otherwise, the best way I can describe it is it is almost like Thorsonís diary being played out for a couple of weeks. You might argue that itís lazy, because there is no link between his various jobs, but I loved it. How better to learn about someone than to just follow them for a bit? Still it would be dangerously close to being a TV movie if not for its star.

McQueen plays Thorson as a little bit old, a little bit weary, but basically content with his very unusual job, if feeling awkward. He demonstrates some brief, but ruthless efficiency in some of the action. Strangely, I was reminded of Die Hardís John McClane more than anything.

Heís stuck in his ways, struggling to accept the prospect of a child, and he collects old toys. Itís also insinuated he collects old jobs! His house is always full of people who were likely caught by him, but became his friend. Like Star Trekís Levar Burton, his first pick-up in the film, who reappears at the house and is always trying to fix things.

He is an endearing character though, so the way people are drawn to him is absolutely convincing, and itís a subtle, open performance by McQueen. I especially enjoyed the running joke of him only liking old cars and finding a Trans Am almost impossible to drive, considering he was actually a very accomplished and influential racing driver!

It may be tough to describe, but itís very easy to recommend and if McQueen had a sense this may have been his last role, then he picked the perfect one. The very final shot is a nice way to finish as well.
« Last Edit: November 08, 2009, 07:51:59 PM by Jon » Logged

Jon
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« Reply #102 on: November 08, 2009, 07:17:55 PM »



Title: Queen of the Damned
Year: 2002
Director: Michael Rymer
Rating: R
Length: 101 Min.
Video: Anamorphic Widescreen 2.35
Audio: English: Dolby Digital 5.1, French: Dolby Digital 5.1, Commentary: Dolby Digital Stereo
Subtitles: English, French, Spanish

Stars:
Stuart Townsend
Marguerite Moreau
Aaliyah
Vincent Perez
Paul McGann

Plot:
It's her time. Her place. The wickedly regal Mother of All Vampires is ready again to rule! Aaliyah plays the title role in this stylish shocker based on Anne Rice's 'The Vampire Chronicles'. Stuart Townsend portrays Lestat, the undead antihero previously seen in the movie version of Anne Rice's 'Interview with the Vampire'. This time, Lestat finds acceptance in a tattooed and pierced world. He's a rock star. And his intoxicating Goth-riffed sound rekindles the desires of all-powerful Akasha.

Awards:
MTV Movie Awards2002NominatedBest VillainAaliyah
Saturn2002NominatedBest Horror Film


Extras:
Closed Captioned
Commentary
Deleted Scenes
DVD-ROM Content
Featurettes
Music Videos
Outtakes
Photo Gallery
Production Notes
Scene Access
Trailers

My Thoughts:
I have bought this movie blind about a year ago when it was on sale. I have treaded watching it, as I mostly read negative reviews for this. Those reviews were right. It is a boring movie, though it has its moments.
I watched it today, because my brother was here and wanted to watch it with me. As he is a "Korn" fan (who provide the music in this movie), he often tried watching it when it was on TV, but always fell asleep during it.

Rating:
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« Reply #103 on: November 08, 2009, 07:58:44 PM »

In the Mood for Love (Dut yeung nin wa)
5 out of 5




Hong Kong 1962.   Chow (Tony Leung - Happy Together, Hard Boiled) is a junior newspaper reporter with an elusive wife.   His new neighbour, Li-zhen (Maggie Cheung - Days of Being Wild, Irma Vep), is a sectretary whose husband seems to spend all his time on business trips.   they become friends, making the lonely evenings more bearable.   As their relationship develops they make a discovery that changes their life forever...

In this sumptuous expolration of desire, internationally acclaimed director Wong Kar-Wai (Chungking Express, Happy Together, Fallen Angels) creates a world of sensuality and longing that will leave you breathless.   "In the Mood for Love" has seduced audiences and critics alike, winning awards at Cannes 2000 for best actor, cinematography and editing.


In The Mood For Love is a spellbinding and adult romance, beautifully filmed in traditional techniques that put photography as important as anything else. Itís moody, yet colourful palette, evokes a sultry, smoky atmosphere to perfectly accompany the enigmatic screenplay. It has a wonderful theme too, frequently accompanying slow motion sequences. I had thought the film was reminding me of 1950s British drama in its composition and character, but when that first slow motion scene came in, it became something else entirely. Throughout, Wong Kar Waiís editing is sublime, languishing on key moments, cutting into others. It is a story driven by emotions rather than events; it isnít entirely clear even how much time passes before the final act when we jump forward a year, and then a little further.

Chow (Tony Leung) and Mrs. Chan (Maggie Ceung), along with their spouses, are lodging in neighbouring apartments. Chowís wife and Mr. Chan both work overseas a lot. Soon, it is clear they are having an affair. The remaining lonely couple start to share more and more time, but are determined not to fall into the same trap and stay faithful to their absent partners, regardless of what they may be up to. Regardless, they find it difficult to remain inconspicuous especially from the people who share their homes with them. Soon hard decisions have to be made.

What is fascinating about the narrative is that almost none of this is explicit. For example, we do see and hear both the spouses, but only briefly and never their faces. We are concerned only with the central pair and it is their conversations that reveal the path. The scene where they finally admit suspicions is brilliantly done.

Refreshingly, this is a purely emotional film about desire, and it is very powerful. Absolutely superb and I canít think of anything similar in recent years. It is unique and quite special.
« Last Edit: November 23, 2009, 08:57:15 PM by Jon » Logged

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« Reply #104 on: November 09, 2009, 01:50:53 PM »

The Hunter
4 out of 5
I had always enjoyed this film when I saw it on TV in my youth (you see how long ago that was!). I would not have expected that you rate it 4 out of 5, so I actually may have to try to find the DVD for it now!

This is the one where he jumps with his car out of the Marina towers in Chicago, right?
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