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Thread: What have you watched lately?

  1. #5051
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    As sad as I was to see Screenwipe and Newswipe go (though I didn't find this year's Antiviral Wipe to be all that funny, to be honest), I'm very happy to get something like Black Mirror in return. Charlie Brooker was the person who got me to watch shows like Quatermass and Sapphire & Steel initially and after he spent so much time criticising the current state of television, it's quite interesting to see what his take on it would be.

  2. #5052
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2002
    Location: In the flesh.
    Just finished episode five of season one of Bernard Corwells "The Last Kingdom". I love this book, mostly I love all his books, but I was expecting them to draw out the story. Rather than do that they have inexplicably cut parts out. At this rate they will finish the whole novel in the first season. What in hell are they going to do for a second season then? They could have had at least three seasons out of that door stop of a book without trying. Five if they didn't shorten anything.

    And yeah, Sulphur, it was unfortunately absolutely possible today. That's what's so bleak about it. They never shy away from showing us our worst nature. Fifteen Million Merits doesn't even seem that impossible in the not so distant future. I often came away feeling both awed by the observational skill and disheartened by my recognition of how little of a stretch it would be for some of the worst ones to come true. A few more hopeful endings would help. I like to believe we can achieve something shy of dystopia even if I have to lie a bit to myself to do it. The unblinking view of us is hard to take on a binge watch.

    I'll be checking out some of these other mentions. Thanks.

  3. #5053
    SShock2.com
    Member

    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: The land of ever sideways rain
    Quote Originally Posted by Tocky View Post
    "The Last Kingdom"
    Curiously, you're the third person whose opinion I trust to recommend this, so I'll have to put it on my to-do list now. I'll let you know what my findings are later.

  4. #5054
    Level 10,000 achieved
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Finland

    Ranking the Ghiblis

    Studio Ghibli's entire catalogue(I think) was put on Netflix a while back. I'd only seen Sprited Away, Mononoke and Grave of the Fireflies previously so I've been catching up. Time for ranking!

    Spirited Away - I mean, it's great! So magical, so many unique/weird/fantastic/horrifying/thrilling sequences.

    Howlís Moving Castle - This one is also solid from beginning to end.

    The Wind Rises - An animated biopic about the aero-engineer who designed the Zero-fighters. On paper you wouldn't think something like this needs to be animated, but the animation does let it present several fantastical sequences that wouldn't be possible otherwise.

    Princess Mononoke - You know about this one. It's badass!

    My Neighbour Totoro - So fuzzy and warm.

    Grave Of The Fireflies - Holy shit what a downer. How did the studio that made My Neighbour Totoro also make this? IN THE SAME YEAR NO LESS!

    Laputa: Castle In The Sky / Porco Rosso / Nausicaš - I'm just gonna lump these together. These are straight-up classic action-adventure films.

    Ponyo - More of a kids movie than the rest of their output. A lot of neat ideas and sequences, but it didn't really grab me.

    From Up On Poppy Hill - Love-story set amid a student-movement to preserve an old clubhouse. Eh, it's fine.

    Tales From Earthsea - Fantasy adventure, that's just... kinda dull. Christopher Walken plays an evil wizard in the English version and gives a very un-Christopher Walken vocal performance.

    The Tale of the Princess Kaguya - The only one of Ghibli's films I've given up on. I don't like the unique animation style and the story wasn't grabbing me.

    Still gotta watch: Kiki, Arrietty, and the rest of them.

  5. #5055
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: Switzerland
    Sorry to hear you didn't enjoy Princess Kaguya more, but it's definitely more of an acquired taste and not as readily engaging as Miyazaki's stuff especially. I have to admit that for me Porco Rosso is near the top, and that's mainly because of the melancholy streak that goes through it. That scene with all the dead aviators gets me every time.

    Don't miss out on Pom Poko (one of Takahata's), which is absolutely bonkers in part. It might not be at the top of your list, also because it does some similar things to Kaguya in terms of varying its style, but it's more immediately fun than that one.

  6. #5056
    Chakat sex pillow
    Registered: Sep 2006
    Location: not here
    I agree that Princess Kaguya's a bit difficult to get into, because not only is it hard to relate to culturally (being set in 10th century Japan no less), but also because it keeps the viewer at a remove by giving everyone but Kaguya very little depth. Add in the fact that your heroine has almost no agency in this tale and things keep happening to her without her input -- the agency is saved for the flawed or terrible people around her -- and the story is almost documentary in its evidencing of female powerlessness in that age, despite being a folk tale. I think it's valuable for that alone despite being hard to watch, and the muted art style feeds that theme; because actually, it's absolutely gorgeous. An animated film done with watercolours and charcoal? It took eight years to make, henke. There's this sequence where Kaguya runs away and the art goes all jagged and scribbly and chaotic to represent what's happening in her head - that scene alone justifies the creative decision they went with.

    Also, you know, the director was the same man who directed Grave of the Fireflies. Kaguya was the last film he directed.

    Anyway, Nausicaš is also definitely worth a watch if you're into early Miyazaki.


    edit: ah, you've seen it. Didn't realise you'd put three of the early ones together.
    Last edited by Sulphur; 28th May 2020 at 11:18.

  7. #5057
    Level 10,000 achieved
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Finland
    Wow, wasn't excepting so much love for Kaguya. Ok ok I'll give it another chance!

    I also watched through the first season of The Righteous Gemstones this week. A series where Danny McBride, Adam Devine, Edi Patterson, and John Goodman star as Televangelist/Mega-Church-running dynasty the Gemstones. I was expecting it to be a comedy, but it gets deep into the drama by the end of episode 1 with one hell of a cliffhanger that makes it hard not to keep watching. It's somewhere near Better Call Saul or Fargo in terms of tone and balance between drama/comedy. Amazing performances by the cast as well, they all get moments to shine. Tim Baltz and Walton Goggins are a lot of fun in it too. And there's this new guy, Tony Cavalero, not sure if I've seen him in anything before. He plays this really dumb one-note character "Keefe" that nonetheless steals whatever scene he's in.

    As a taste, here's the scene where Keefe runs into his old Satanist friends and is feels the temptation of the dark side yet again.



    Anyway, great show. Only 9 episodes long. It's on HBO. Watch it!

  8. #5058
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2005
    Location: Netherlands
    I've watched Lion (2016) tonight, an earnestly filmed, emotional story based on true events starring Dev Patel, Rooney Mara, Nicole Kidman and a great acting little Indian kid. It was very engaging, I actually felt tears burning at the ending scene (they didn't come out, but I felt them welling up behind my eyes) and that rarely happens for me when watching movies. It's a story about adoption and my previous girlfriend was adopted so that resonated a little more with me than it normally might have.

    It was weird though to see Executive Producer: Harvey Weinstein during the opening credits. I must've watched dozens of movies executive produced by him (and his brother Bob) but this was the first one since the scandal and it feels different now to see his name on a movie.

  9. #5059
    Lion made me bawl, wonderful movie.

    I watched Midsommar yesterday, what a trip. Horrific yet cheery all the way. This is not something you see everyday... A very original take on horror movies.

  10. #5060
    LittleFlower
    Registered: Jul 2001
    Location: Netherlands
    I might watch Midsommar.

    I've seen only one Swedish film about the Midsummer Night.
    It was called Dunderklumpen (1974).

    Do Swedish people know that film ?
    I saw the movie originally when I was ~12 years old. Maybe a little bit too old at the time already. But I really enjoyed the magic of the movie. Ten years ago, when I started watching movies over the Internet, and could search for any movie I wanted, Dunderklumpen was one of the first movies I (re)watched. And to my surprise, being many decades older, I still enjoyed the movie.

    Three weeks from now it is Midsummer Night. I might watch Dunderklumpen again. Thanks for bringing the idea into my head ! Or I can watch Midsommar. Or both !

  11. #5061
    Quote Originally Posted by Gryzemuis View Post
    It was called Dunderklumpen (1974).
    That's a name I haven't heard in a long while. As a wee lad, I most likely watched the movie some time or other and/or got the book read to me. Only vague memories of what it was about, though.

  12. #5062
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2002
    Location: In the flesh.
    The Last Kingdom is getting gooooooood. It's true they chopped up the story and stuck parts where they weren't but they did it well. Now the story has veered completely off and I don't mind a bit. I love the treachery of court and the honesty of tendon cutting eye gouging battle on a muddy field. There's almost some deep seated racial memory it speaks to.

  13. #5063
    Still Subjective
    Registered: Dec 1999
    Location: Idiocy will never die
    Quote Originally Posted by henke View Post
    I also watched through the first season of The Righteous Gemstones this week..

    As a taste, here's the scene where Keefe runs into his old Satanist friends and is feels the temptation of the dark side yet again.



    Anyway, great show. Only 9 episodes long. It's on HBO. Watch it!
    The ended just as it was getting good!

  14. #5064
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2005
    Location: Netherlands
    You know, I'll admit that while following the news about what happened to George Floyd and the uprising in America that followed, I haven't been able to bring myself to watch the actual video of him dying. I've seen stills but not the video. To see the life being squeezed out of someone while his pleas for mercy are being ignored, that's the type of thing that can make me really sad and make my blood boil at the same time. Maybe being sad and angry isn't a bad thing in this case so maybe I should watch it, and I just might as soon as I can bring myself to do it.

    In any case, tonight I watched a movie that's kind of topical called Just Mercy. It's based on true events and is not so much about police violence against black Americans but the injustices they face at the hands of the American justice system, and about a Harvard attorney who spends his life trying to get innocent people off death row. I must admire the sincerity and earnestness of the production, that still also finds moments of humor. It definitely has its heart in the right place and it's an impressive story for sure. However, there were some times were I thought the dialogue was a little hokey when it was trying to be sincere, and some moments that didn't quite work as intended because of that. While I think this is a moving story that's well told, as far as filmmaking quality is concerned, it doesn't quite reach the heights of Lion, which I talked about a few posts back, a movie in which I cannot find fault whatsoever. Still, I was moved by the story and can recommend watching the movie. 8/10.

  15. #5065
    Still Subjective
    Registered: Dec 1999
    Location: Idiocy will never die
    Just Mercy is on my list. Don't know how depressing it's going to be though.

    RE: George Floyd - I think it's a necessary watch, because it really, really contextualises the issue. I don't agree with looting but protests should go on for as long and as far as it needs for there to be a big change in the USA with this stuff. I keep reading crazy stories of a similar nature.

  16. #5066
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: Switzerland
    Having watched some more Succession, I've reassessed my original take on the series somewhat. The first two episodes felt a lot like The Thick of It populated by the ultra-rich, with a heavy emphasis on cringe (especially when the likes of Kendall, Roman and Tom try to be all alpha male), but since then it's leaned more heavily into the family drama, and character-wise it's some amazingly dark shit, with impeccable acting. I suspect it'd also make a great companion piece for The Sopranos, with both of them focused on America, the family and toxic capitalism, and both being queasily funny and dark without feeling self-importantly heavy.

    At the other end of the spectrum, I'm not all that impressed with Dark. It's atmospheric and it looks nice, but I'm finding its puzzles unengaging and somewhat obnoxious, and there's barely a character that I find interesting beyond their role in the mystery. There've been several moments where I was left with the impression that the writers think their puzzle box is more clever than it actually is, playing up a reveal that had been hinted at quite heavily for several episodes already. Tonally, it seems to aim at something like The Returned (the French original - I haven't seen the US remake), but the plot strikes me as pure pulp, so Dark ends up feeling rather self-important to me. It's reasonably entertaining, I just don't think it's nearly as good as some of the very enthusiastic reviews suggested. It feels more like Lost several seasons in.

  17. #5067
    Still Subjective
    Registered: Dec 1999
    Location: Idiocy will never die
    Started Us. Stopped. It was boring.

    I read the plot on Wikipedia. Makes no sense.

    How disappointing.

    I'm watching Space Force on Netflix. 3 episodes in and I'm liking this. Very easy to watch and love the cast mostly.

  18. #5068
    Member
    Registered: May 2004
    Us was fantastic and made perfect sense as an allegory for the hidden human costs of the western capitalist lifestyle. That said, it definitely isn't as straightforward in how it delivers its message as Get Out and is perhaps a little too easy to miss.

  19. #5069
    Still Subjective
    Registered: Dec 1999
    Location: Idiocy will never die
    Ok, when both mothers are together in the lounge, the "real" one who turns out to be the clone handcuffed to the table, she never once says to the other - hey, what's the deal with the underground life? I never got it as a kid but yeah for sure I remember taking your place so what's up with that? And the real real one never says "hey you messed my life up by switching with me and that's why I'm here and you know it so stfu!" As if that isn't the first thing that would happen.

    And even then, the real one never said anything in front of Gabe and the kids. Why keep it mysterious until the end?

    But I stopped watching it because I got bored. It was just at the bit were Gabe and Abraham are on the boat. Dunno, it just didn't grab me. I though it was shot really well though and was hella creepy up until the mothers were talking. Just got dull after that.

  20. #5070
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2017
    Location: Denmark
    Quote Originally Posted by SubJeff View Post

    I'm watching Space Force on Netflix. 3 episodes in and I'm liking this. Very easy to watch and love the cast mostly.
    Seems to me they don't know where they are going with that series... One moment Steve Carell is the most incompetent of generals, accidentally pressing big red buttons to launch space rockets ahead of schedule, completely disregarding scrientific interests and facts, etc.
    The next he's helping his teen daughter do math homework like a regular responsible dad, giving great and meaningful speeches at budget hearings, and generally being a good guy...
    The rest of the cast is equally a mixed bunch of complete incompetence and likeable good-guys... I'm confused.

  21. #5071
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Melbourne, Australia
    Watched "Predestination" last night. Time travel with lots of paradox related stuff. Quite interesting and very odd. Considering that it was made here in Australia, there was HEAPS of actors that I'd seen on aussie TV shows and commercials. Certainly a movie worth watching.

  22. #5072
    Moderator
    Registered: Jan 2003
    Location: NeoTokyo
    I think they could have sold it better if Ethan Hawke's character had been the one with the visible facial reconstruction, considering he was the one later in line, or if they had just kept Sarah Snook the whole way through, but it's not such a big deal, and that would have had its own issues. Conceptually it was cool to follow.

    A total aside, but I really like Ethan Hawke. He fits with the whole modern auteur zeitgeist, being conscientious about making movies and taking artistic risks which actually flopped at first but led to some really first rate stuff later. And he's part of that kind of Austin scene associated with Richard Linklater movies (the public id of which is Matthew Mcconaughey), that I feel really personally connected to from my time in Austin in the '90s.

  23. #5073
    Level 10,000 achieved
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Finland
    Quote Originally Posted by Tommyph1208 View Post
    Seems to me they don't know where they are going with that series... One moment Steve Carell is the most incompetent of generals, accidentally pressing big red buttons to launch space rockets ahead of schedule, completely disregarding scrientific interests and facts, etc. The next he's helping his teen daughter do math homework like a regular responsible dad, giving great and meaningful speeches at budget hearings, and generally being a good guy...
    I think Carrell's character makes sense. Sure, he's clueless about all the actual space stuff, but he's good with people. Those traits stay consistent throughout the season.

    Just finished watching the last episode. Overall, I do agree with you, it's not great. Carrell does a decent job. Malkovich is very good, he really leans into his character. The rest of the cast does an ok job but it didn't really feel like anyone behind the camera was particularly enthusiastic about this show. There's a laugh or two in it's 10-episode run, but overall... not great.

  24. #5074
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Melbourne, Australia
    Quote Originally Posted by demagogue View Post
    I think they could have sold it better if Ethan Hawke's character had been the one with the visible facial reconstruction, considering he was the one later in line, or if they had just kept Sarah Snook the whole way through, but it's not such a big deal, and that would have had its own issues. Conceptually it was cool to follow.

    A total aside, but I really like Ethan Hawke. He fits with the whole modern auteur zeitgeist, being conscientious about making movies and taking artistic risks which actually flopped at first but led to some really first rate stuff later. And he's part of that kind of Austin scene associated with Richard Linklater movies (the public id of which is Matthew Mcconaughey), that I feel really personally connected to from my time in Austin in the '90s.
    Yeah his character was out of place, but at the same time done quite well.

    This week all of the drive in cinemas in my state re-opened, but as the state of the world is what it currently is, there isn't exactly any new movies coming in, so they've been showing a mix of what had just been coming out prior to lock down restrictions, and some really old stuff (Grease, the Blues Brothers, Back to the Future etc). I had the pleasure of watching one of the movies out just prior. The Invisible Man. This was excellent. It starts out a bit slow, but gets going over time as the movie goes on, and it's filled with a heap of blink and you'll miss it bits.

    The only negative is that all the trailers out for this completely ruin the best bits. So DON'T WATCH THE TRAILER if you plan on watching it. Go in blind. You'll thank me later. Thank fully, I'd only seen bits of trailers, but even that spoiled some parts. My wife hadn't seen any of them so had a blast. I still thoroughly enjoyed it, and I plan on watching this in proper quality later on at some point. Too many people at the drive in kept turning their car lights on and washing the screen out with light + the super dark bits were hard to see. So seeing it in top quality on a second viewing would be preferable. I highly recommend this one.

  25. #5075
    LittleFlower
    Registered: Jul 2001
    Location: Netherlands
    I've seen 5 episodes (out of 8) of Devs. It sucks.

    I'm gonna watch the last 3 episodes. Don't ask me why. Casting sucks: Swanson is unbelievable as high-tech entrepeneur, Mizuno is boring to watch, nobody makes an impression, I can't relate to any of the actors. The fictional tech is unbelievable. Amaya is supposed to be a startup company in Silicon Valley, but I doubt the writers of the show have ever been in Silicon Valley or even ever visited a startup. Forest's dead kid swinging in your face every 15 minutes makes you not care about dead kids anymore. The pictures, the colors, the scenery (is that what's called cinematography ?) is all just meh. It's not a terrible TV show. TV makers have really learned a lot in the last 20 years, I think. But still, not worth watching. Maybe something happens in the last 3 episodes, but I doubt it.

    I still have Westworld Season 3 waiting for me. That's next. And then June 27th, the 3rd and last season of Dark will start. I have no idea yet what I'll watch in July.

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