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What are you watching? 2018 edition


#2559

Yeah, The Wolfman had potential and I wonder what the original production plan and director would have produced. In the end, it was almost like Tim Burton’s SLEEPY HOLLOW which was an attempt to recapture the Hammer Films style for a modern audience.

The original The Wolfman actually came from the fairly dark and deep experience of the writer Siodmak as a Polish Jew escaping Nazism.

WOLF did that to a lesser extent with the idea of moving into middle age and a mid-life crisis. You’re growing less vibrant. You’re not young, fit and good looking any more, and start to question if you ever were. People treat you differently. You get angry and needlessly aggressive in situations that don’t call for it. Your body changes - hair grows in strange places.

It really is a kind of counterpoint to adolescence and Wolf does play as a reflection of the teen mutant or superhero origin… that just happens to be about office politics rather than high school drama.

Actually, that would be an interesting idea for a television series.


#2560

A Simple Favour: Delightful! I’ve been all-in for Paul Feig ever since I saw Freaks and Geeks a decade ago, and I’m not stopping now. Anna Kendrick’s best role since the first Pitch Perfect, and Blake Lively is the best I’ve ever seen her.

The plot is obviously preposterous and filled with loads of the usual tropes of the thriller genre, but I was onboard all the way. I only had some small problems: occasionally the comedy/thriller balance feels a bit off, and the third act goes on slightly too long.

I also rewatched Game Night yesterday, and with this, that, and Blockers, it’s been a good year for R-rated comedy.

Other thoughts:

  • I hope Henry Golding’s mother’s ring continues to be a plot point in every movie he’s in. I’m looking forward to the Christmas romcom he’s doing with Feig next, even if I’m not convinced by Emilia Clarke as a leading lady in a comedy.

  • Linda Cardellini has a very fun one-scene cameo, playing completely against type, and is great.

  • Rupert Friend has a fun small role as a fashion designer. After this and The Death of Stalin, I hope he does more comedy.


#2561

Yeah, I was entertained by the movie, but I did think it was at it’s best in it’s quirkier moments and that it didn’t always manage to balance the tone as well as it could have. But both Kendrick and Lively were lots of fun.


#2562

It’s interesting that you called this an r-rated comedy. I thought that some of the jokes were at odds with the plot, and worse, that it turned some of the story into a punchline. Lively was good though, you’re right.


#2563

I agree.
And really I would love the Director’s Cut - where it not that the Director’s Cut includes what is pretty much a continuity hole because they didn’t shoot a scene they needed to make this particular dialogue exchange work. It just references a scene that only exists in the theatrical. The scene is well done character building - but it sticks out incredibly jarringly.

If they had reshot that scene - it’d be perfect for me.


#2564

Didn’t really go into as much depth as the description made out but it was an interesting oolong behind the scenes of a local street art festival.


#2565

I’ve watched/rewatched every Ang Lee movie over the last few months, and am now finishing it up with Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk.

I’d forgotten how much of it was characters staring right down the lens. It’s a fascinating failed experiment in terms of 3D/HFR, but it’s a shame the story isn’t up to much, especially considering most of Lee’s other work (everything except for Taking Woodstock, pretty much).

I hope Gemini Man is a return to form.


#2566

I finally caught ‘The Meg’ today.

It’s not great, but I guess that’s no surprise. Like the newer ‘Jurassic’ movies, it’s not much better (if at all) than something the SyFy channel would’ve made a few years ago, but it has $100m spent on it, giving it a gloss lacking from SyFy’s efforts. It’s quite dumb and feels more than a little rushed in places.

Statham is a bit wooden, and I’ve seen him give decent performances in the past, but here he’s no better than the script demands and it doesn’t demand much.

Everyone else is only slightly better, a reliable character actor like Cliff Curtis can normal be counted on to elevate the material, but he doesn’t get much opportunity. The Chinese cast do fine, but seem a lot better when speaking their first language.

I wont be surprised if we get sequels (it’s done pretty well) but I’m not that interested to see them.


#2567

Watched the second season of The IT Crowd. First time watching the series. Hilarious.


#2568

Finally saw “Arrival”. I loved pretty much everything about this movie, especially the way the relevation hits you in the climax of the movie. One thing I didn’t like was the way they showed her getting information from the future to injection some tension into the final act. That’s not how it should work, and from what I’ve seen it’s also not part of the short story. Which I need to read, by the way.


#2569

Finally got around to Superman vs Batman. It wasn’t awful but it wasn’t perticularly good either. Ponderous. Glad we watched the theatrical cut. I fail to see how more of it could make it any better.


#2570

I’m glad this post was short. I fail to see how more of it could make it any better.


#2571

Liked:
Batman’s fights (despite some weird physics)
The music
Lex’s "Step into my office* line. Painted more a picture of the person/businessman he is than any exposition.
Batman’s nightmare


#2572

Much like the Ultimate Edition, this lengthened post did make it better. :wink:


#2573

The longer version is clearer, whether that means better is a subjective thing.


#2574

The Bodyguard finale. Some nice tense moments, and a good, but maybe to neat, wrap up to the series.


#2575

He would have made it shorter but he didn’t have time :wink:


#2576

Saw Climax directed by Gaspar Nòe and loved it. It’s definitely not a film for everyone but it had me smiling a lot, laughing, and eventually recoiling. It looks like all of the good buzz from Cannes was right. Sofia Boutella is a great physical actor and (obviously) dancer.


#2577

The whole point of seeing her daughter throughout the movie was that she had agreed to have her despite knowing that she would die young. It told the aliens everything they needed to know about humanity. Also, thank god Amy Adams was there to represent us. Thank god for Amy Adams in general.


#2578

I was actually surprised by how poor I found it. Not for the plot itself - you expect a level of convolutedness and implausibility to these kinds of shows, and I’ve enjoyed the show as a silly thriller so far.

But the way this final episode played out was fairly unthrilling. The bomb vest stuff went on so long and was so drawn out that any tension had evaporated well before it was resolved. And ending things with not one but two info-dumps delivered via CCTV of a police interview, to explain the plot to viewers was very clunky and flat - it felt more like reading a Wikipedia summary than a proper drama.

I liked some elements of it - like the way the plot resolution specifically addressed all the complaints that David was a terrible choice for the bodyguard role - but the actual execution fell down for me.

And ultimately, I think the red herring of Julia’s unseen death worked against it, as you were led to expect a twist or further development on that front that never came.