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Modern Movies; The last 10 years!
Topic Started: Jan 6 2011, 07:25 AM (12,457 Views)
KMInfinity
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Some of my students saw it and said Lincoln, with Daniel Day Lewis was much better. I'll check it out when it hits OnDemand.
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KMInfinity
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I was thinking more of Krystal's suggestion about my students seeing it in class, what appeals to them. They are much more engaged by a personal film, one that is very centered on a person they can connect with, and I was surprised that most didn't connect with The Butler. Maybe the scope of it and the 'reigned in' nature of the character as tgir said, could be the reason. Interesting.
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KMInfinity
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August: Osage

A very mixed bag. Definitely 'star turns' for Streep and Roberts. But the movie felt like it was too stagey, with deliberate 'set pieces' to showcase the actors rather than to tell the story of the characters organically.

It's got some hilarious dark humor, and some very dark dysfunctional drama. the plot revolves around Streep's character, pill popping bitch-from-hell Vi (Violet) calls the family home to Oklahoma because dad is missing. The next few days revolves around family issues and fights.

The movie is based on the play by Tracy Letts, who is also the movie writer, and that's 70% of the problem, imo. It's too stagey, feels very much like a series of scenes. The other problems are due to a tone that swings too wildly, and way too much melodrama instead of drama. There is the heart of a really great story here, and some really great characters, but I felt (unusually for me) the story needed a stronger focus on plot and flow. I also found a lot of it predictable.

But. Seven of us went to dinner to discuss the movie afterwards and I was by far the harshest critic. People loved the performances, and I agree they were the strong point. Others were also engrossed by the family dynamics and didn't find them to be cliche or "Tennessee Williams" redux, so ymmv.

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KMInfinity
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Finally caught up with Silver Linings Playbook, and I liked it a lot. It had some of the old screwball comedy elements and a good storyline (with one caveat), and DeNiro was great. I wanted to know more, hang out more with those people.

ETA- Krystal you are right. He is unwatchable.
Edited by KMInfinity, Jan 29 2014, 12:27 AM.
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KMInfinity
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Krystal
Mar 30 2014, 03:10 PM
Did anyone see August Osage County yet?
I discussed it a bit on the previous page in post #450.

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KMInfinity
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Finally caught Gravity OnDemand.

Excellent movie. Knew I'd regret not seeing it in theaters.
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KMInfinity
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>>>>>highly whitewashed.

yep. I really dislike Disney, for lots of specific reasons and on general principle. Let's start with the godawful personal life of the author and her messed up relationship with her adopted son. The one never mentioned in the movie. And how she separated identical twins at birth because she didn't want two. WTFF

Helen Goff is a fascinating, complicated, deeply flawed person and I would enjoy a movie about her, not that crap in SMB.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/10483126/Saving-Mr-Banks-The-true-story-of-PL-Travers.html
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KMInfinity
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That's on my list to see, Marg. Good to hear PSH is good in it.
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KMInfinity
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Yeah I am not happy that my school's doing an Into the Woods adaptation. It needs context, and I wanted to write a couple extra scenes but it didn't work out with Sleeping Beauty last year so I have little hope.
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KMInfinity
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>>>>>I'm kinda surprised your school would DO Into the Woods... somebody sneak that past the higher-ups?...
I think the agreement was to do the first act only and 'adapt' it...not sure of the specifics. I think there's a JR version that ends with the 'happily every after' part. I also think a lot of the deaths are being edited. So why do it at all? One thing I really like about Into The Woods is the crash of the fairy tale dream when things don't really end 'happily ever after.'

I dunno. Sometimes I do like optimistic endings - I think it depends on other factors.

>>>>>Oh, it doesn't need any scenes added for context...
Maybe 'context' was the wrong word...'balance' instead... I have problems with fairy tale tropes and ITW is a little better than the old Disney stuff, but there's still a lot of...subliminal messages? that negate the things that seem like progress even for ITW. I don't think 6th, 7th, and 8th graders ARE sophisticated enough to get a lot of it without guidance. I want them to be questioning the text, looking at the subtext, not accepting the superficial... For example, the whole point of the witch doing all of this to regain her youth, then in order to achieve THAT goal she has to sacrifice her ability to cast spells. Don't get me started on the whole mess with the trope about intelligent women are evil.

It would be easy to play with the text anyway since we already play with mashup/adaptations. (In fact it's to give more kids more lines and solos...but I try to use it to sneal in some subversive thinking...lol) Every year we add stuff that often ends up being the best parts of the show, imo. For example, two years ago, when we did Cinderella, we added the Beatles "Yesterday' for the prince to sing, and had an Elvis song and a Queen song that sort of subverted the fairy tale thread. I liked that.

We had a Lady Gaga song in beauty and the Beast. Poker face? :firemad:

However, last year we did Snow White (not Sleeping Beauty as I said above...I can't even differentiate the princessmess :P ) and I wanted to add a song for the dwarves about unionizing. Had a Black Flag and a Woody Guthri song picked out. Could have been funny and a pointed reminder connecting to real life issues. That was too far. :rant:

I think if the drama moderator didn't focus so much over the years on disney movies, I'd be okay with things. But in ten years we've done two non-fairy tale plays. The justification I admit is a valid one in a way - the play is first performed at school for K-8. Even The Sound of Music is a bit tough for a lot of the younger ones.
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KMInfinity
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The local arty movie house is showing Princess Kaguya and I really want to see it on the big screen, but it's only here until friday and this week is hellish, so no after school movie time available. :-(


https://www.youtube.com/watch?x-yt-ts=1421914688&x-yt-cl=84503534&v=tM6hcHp0_kU
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KMInfinity
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Yes. The theory being I have time and companions willing to venture out regularly. Mark is a dud sometimes. I couldn't get him to go see Selma Saturday. :-( I really should get used to going to movies alone.
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>>>>>Also, it's my default "I'm too pissed at Matt to stay in the same house with him" escape.

Okay, I think the problem is that I don't see it as 'escape' but defeat to go alone. Need to change that mindset.
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KMInfinity
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Well then. I will commit to being a solitary movie goer. I have a friend, L, who attends every Oscar nominated movie and doc. (I mean EVERY - goes to other cities if necessary.) She lives 45 min east. I need to make the effort to meet her 'in the middle' more.

I agree Dax, it's fun to go to lunch dinner after and discuss. L pulls together a 'Women's Day Out' winter and summer to see movies her hubby (and most guys) will pass on. It's always fun.

Dax, people talking during the movie and being generally like couch potatoes rather than art patrons is why Mark increasingly is resistant. Though we do hold hands often.
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I don't recall anyone mentioning this one, caught it on HBO and it was terrific, best Science fiction in awhile. Surprised it wasn't a blockbuster, the marketing must have sucked.

Edge of Tomorrow - Tom Cruise, Emily Blunt, Bill Paxton

Very hard to discuss without spoilers. The premise is great - Groundhog Day for a soldier journalist embedded in a D-Day alien battle. Lots of action, great twists, some nice humor moments and some nice heartwarming moments sprinkled throughout.

It has a 90% ratting on rotten Tomatoes which is darn impressive for an action/adventure....

I watched the official trailer and it really underwhelms - the movie is good, the trailer misses the point..

Spoilery review; Five reasons to see EOT.
http://screenrant.com/edge-of-tomorrow-reviews-ending-blu-ray/

I agree with this... Best SciFi action heroine since Ripley.

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KMInfinity
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No I haven't...
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KMInfinity
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Love the LOTR books, read them several times since the 60s. They are touchstones in my life. I love the movies too. For me, mythic fantasy is like poetry - there's a deeper truth embedded in it. I can and have watched all three LOTR movies in a marathon and reveled in it. Once, in a theater. When Annie Lennox sings "into the West" I cry. I might have that song at my funeral.


The Hobbit movies are enjoyable, but bloated. And missing that inner power.
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I caught Birdman. Outstanding role for Keaton, Oscar worthy. I'm hoping to catch Redmayne's Theory role to compare.

The movie itself was really wacky and out-there (which I like), but a couple things confused me, especially the end. Did anyone see it?
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KMInfinity
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That's the thing. As tgir noted, it was like an inside joke with Hollywood vs Broadway, and the reviewer noted what i thought was a major theme of the movie - super-realism??? And the movie went out of its way to be pretty gritty and 'realistic' about the 'glamour' of acting (and, maybe, mental illness as portrayed by movies?), and then when he 'flew' the first time, it was clearly a fantasy because he did NOT fly to the theater, a cabbie chased him down.

So Mark's take was that he didn't fly, but was dead on the sidewalk, and his daughter was in denial.

The movie needed to be less ambiguous somewhere or other - either making clear the super-realism was the reality, or opening the door for the fantasy elements instead of always - always - giving a slightly shifted scene to explain away his TK and other fantasy elements.

I loved everything except that ending.
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KMInfinity
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Big agree. I haven't seen 12 years either. I cried AGAIN watching Glory with my class. I talked ahead of time with my three African American students to give them a heads-up about the film, let them know they could get up (without asking me) and 'take a break' get a drink, etc if they needed to.

After the movie, one of them patted me on the back and said I worry too much and am too sensitive. :P "The movie was good, and it was real, but it wasn't anything to overwhelm me. Not like 12 years a slave." She was 13. I dunno....

I 'get' that art isn't always beauty, that the artist / journalist / etc often must reveal the ugliness to make the statement. But I agree too often it's not an 'honest spotlight' but prurience masquerading as art. I think sometimes its misguided honesty - the need of the artist to 'reach' the jaded, the hardened. But there's a fine line, and too often it's crossed.
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KMInfinity
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That does sound thought provoking. I'll check it out. Every quarter, I list 4 or 5 movies that kids can watch for extra credit at home and write a 'movie review' based on my criteria (must include its connection to our class studies). This would fit well with post-WWII World unit.
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KMInfinity
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I wasn't as impressed as others with Whiplash either.
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Looking forlward to Trumbo.

Goal this weekend is to finally see Star Wars...except now the times offered are being cut. grrr And The Big Short is already gone. double grrrrr....

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KMInfinity
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Thanks for all the movie rec's - gonna try to see some OnDemand...
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KMInfinity
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haven't seen Concussion but it is on my list. It was big in Pittsburgh...
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Loved the original Ghostbusters. More than once, in normal context in class, the line has come up, "who you gonna call?" and each time it causes an immediate segue into giggles. :P

Agree Godfather II was better. De Niro, young Corleone. By far.
Edited by KMInfinity, Jul 29 2016, 08:41 PM.
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KMInfinity
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Yes> cap 2 was the best.



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KMInfinity
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I'm with the tgir men - the Seven Samurai all the way. :P I'm a big Kurosawa fan, and give kids extra credit of they watch some of his films. (part of my US History/World connections efforts)
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Finally saw Imitation Game. Very good, even if I'm not a Cumberbatch fan. As usual with these fic-docs, I gotta do research now. :P
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Anyone see Wonder Woman yet?
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