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What have you watched recently? 3D!



  • Registered Users Posts: 67 ✭✭ walkonby

    An Cailín Ciúin - finally made the effort to go see this in the cinema. Beautiful film that does a lot with a little. Period details are charming for those of us around in Ireland in the 80s. (And an interesting contrast with Banshees, which is a lot stagier, and obviously at more of a remove from Irish culture and experience.)

    Glass Onion - enjoyed Knives Out, but this began to unravel after an entertaining first act. Rian Johnson’s scripts always try too hard to be clever. Would like to see him adapting someone else’s story.

    Corsage - similar to but much better than Sofia Coppola’s fictionalised Marie Antoinette biopic, a rock and roll reimagining of the life of Austrian Empress Elisabeth. Recommend, but be prepared for a slow film, which feels long despite the under 2 hr runtime.

    White Noise - a novel that never seemed likely to translate well to the screen. Good performances throughout and some well-realised scenes, but the postmodern melding of genres that produced equal measures of humour and disquiet on the page is awkwardly executed here, with the film lurching from satire to farce to thriller and back again. Disjointed. Fun (if overlong) credit sequence.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,864 ✭✭✭ steve_r

    This is England (2004)

    Another film I had on my list for a long time - and one that really lived up to expectations. It's an amazing film which is heartbreaking at times. It tells the story of a young boy growing up without a father, and most of the story is told from his perspective.

    The performances are excellent and the dialogue really rings true. The film deals with a lot of heavy political points in a very sincere way, which can be a challenge in a film like this. The final scene reminded me of the final scene in the 400 blows by Truffaut, and it is an image that will stay with me for a long time.

    The Menu (2022)

    I saw the trailer for this in the cinema and thought at the time that it looked rubbish. Since then I became aware of the strong connection the film has with Succession which is a show I love. The director has directed a number of Succession episodes and one of the writers has also written for the show, and that shows in the writing, with a similar sense of humour applied.

    The setup here is a celebrity chef (Ralf Feines) hosting a number of rich people, and one "regular" person (Anna Taylor Joy) on a private island. It's a horror/comedy, which I think is a particularly hard genre to pull off, given how subjective comedy can be. It didn't fully work for me - I don't think the central chef character was particularly well written, and honestly, I think they could have cast someone better than Fiennes in the role. He is an amazing actor - but I'm not sure the part suited him. Anna Taylor Joy on the other hand was excellent. The film lacked some of the creative devices horror films have used to build tension and atmosphere and I think it was a bit underwhelming from a horror perspective.

    Overall it's a decent film - just one I think could have been better if different choices were made.

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 29,955 CMod ✭✭✭✭ pixelburp

    Blow Out (1981)

    Absolute top drawer sleaze from the master of such, who could take material that might have been vulgar trash in another director's hands, and make it ... uh... well, a slightly classier brand of trash by dint of De Palma's reputation & mastery of the camera to make everything so compelling and beautiful and horrifying all at the same time. This was a messy, slightly chaotic kind of political conspiracy, and I'm not sure it stood up to scrutiny, but equally the film sometimes seemed disinterested in the actual machinations of the plot; instead often focusing on John Travolta's lead as he manually pieced together the mystery from his editing room. This film made the analog & very tactile process of turning still images into moving pictures absolutely engrossing.

    That said. The tension and intensity was constantly, and almost single-handedly, pulled down by Nancy Allen's performance; a fine actor in other things, but here her affectation of a beaten-down and slightly bewildered woman never gelled. Her attempt to play concussed was an especially cringe-inducing moment (not helped by Travolta's character hitting on her!). It wasn't enough to undercut the drama of the final act mind you, and maybe making her a whimpering victim was part of the masterplan? The finale hit hard, despite that encroaching antipathy, and ultimately on-brand for the kind of worldview De Palma tended to infuse his stories with. While the last scene - the last line in fact - was a mic-drop few thrillers of this ilk could hope to match.

  • Moderators, Arts Moderators Posts: 23,506 Mod ✭✭✭✭ TICKLE_ME_ELMO

    The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse

    Recorded off BBC on Christmas Day, but also available on Apple TV +

    A review on Letterboxd calls it "The Snowman but make it group therapy" which is pretty accurate. It's an animated short, based on a very popular book, that's about a small boy trying to find home, who is joined by the animals along the way. They basically spout little lines of seld help at him along the way, and depending on your levels of cynicism, you'll either hate it, or end up a crying mess. I was somewhere in the middle for the most part.

    The animation is gorgeous, it's a real shame that Western animation only seems to go for this kind of style in shorts. The score is lovely, and although it's very on the nose with its lessons, it sometimes doesn't hurt to be reminded of these very simple things.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,116 ✭✭✭ shrapnel222


    watched this as i saw it featured heavily and very high up and many 2022 films of the year lists. literally just a slice of life of a divorced father and daughter on holiday in Turkey. I understand the subtlety of the film but it left me a bit cold. it won't feature in my 2022 list! 😀

    Bones and all

    well this is different. A young cannibal has to find meaning and understanding in the world once her father gives up on her for chewing a girl's finger off. Sort of coming of age movie meets road movie meets love story, with an added zest of gore. i enjoyed it and the performances of Chalamet and Russell are great

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,084 ✭✭✭ BruteStock

    A film that seemingly disappeared into the ether and one Ive wanted to watch since I rented it on dvd is viewable on YouTube in streaming quality.

    My Son My Son What Have Ye Done. Produced by David Lynch and Directed by Werner Herzog. A early role for Micheal Shannon , he plays the role of a man who descends into madness. Many of his bizzaro ramblings throughout the film are quite humorous. For example he keeps flamingos as pets and calls them eagles in drag. He wants his honeymoon on the moon and tells his girlfriend God is living in his oatmeal.

    Anyway, he goes to Peru and comes home totally insane. He murders his mother and moronic cops played by Willem Dafoe and Micheal Penea are called to the scene. The film is totally nuts yet very engrossing and at times very funny. The cinematography is great , the soundtrack is great. Chloe Sevigny is stunning. Recommended.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,116 ✭✭✭ shrapnel222


    Gripping biopic about the downfall of the conductor Lydia Tar. This is an almost voyeuristic look into the incredible world of classical music. Blanchett gives a sublime performance. The conversations are fascinating and it just leaves you wanting more. Superb.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,242 ✭✭✭ El Gato De Negocios

    If you haven't already, put This is England 86 and 88 on your watch list. 86 in particular is compelling, albeit difficult viewing by times.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,864 ✭✭✭ steve_r

    Yep, on the list for sure.

    The Verdict - 1982

    This is the story of an alcoholic lawyer (Paul Newman) who takes on a medical negligence case. Directed by Sidney Lumet, and written by David Mamet, this is a well-told story with a fine lead performance from Newman. There's also a strong supporting cast including James Mason, an actor I haven't seen a lot of, but really enjoyed in this, and The Deadly Affair (also directed by Lumet).

    These legal dramas can tend to be predictable, however, I'd give the scriptwriting a lot of credit here for how the story is told - it doesn't fall victim to cliche and the characters (especially Newman) have an interesting and compelling arc. Overall I recommend it.

    Intermission - 2003

    I hadn't seen this for the best part of 15 years so I was curious how time had treated it. For anyone unaware of it, it's a Dublin story with an ensemble cast, including Colin Farrell, Cillian Murphy and Colin Meaney (and many more).

    Dublin in 2003 looks very different to Dublin today - hardly surprising given that it is 20 years old. Filmed before the smoking ban as well - which is surreal to see in the pubs!

    I loved the opening scene and it's a great example of the charisma Farrell can bring to a role. It does a good job of introducing its ensemble cast, and despite limited screen time we get to know the characters quite well, which reflects well on the writing and the acting. I think where the film struggles is the lack of depth given to Farrell's character (who is pretty much a cliche troublemaker and doesn't say much outside of the opening scene), and Meaney's character (a fairly over-the-top guard). I found both of these characters a bit cartoonish compared to the rest of the characters which were a lot more grounded and relatable.

    The plot is relatively contrived but still gives us an exciting story which rattles along - the film is rarely predictable and there's a real sense that anything can happen.

    A mixed bag - a good nostalgia watch but don't expect perfection.

  • Registered Users Posts: 12,821 ✭✭✭✭ bnt

    Two very different comedies over the last two days:

    Ticket To Paradise (2022)

    I thought it was OK, pretty mild as these things go. For me it had echoes of My Best Friend's Wedding from a different angle. The romantic tension between Julia Roberts and George Clooney was not convincing at all, perhaps because we know both actors are happily married in real life, not to each other. Romcoms are not Clooney's thing: this was his first since the superior One Fine Day (1996). At one point Roberts says something like "you've clearly never been to Hawaii", which is odd since The Descendants (2011) is one of his best roles. It hasn't escaped me that I'm talking more about the actors and their other movies than about their characters in this one: they were good, but I could never forget that I was watching today's Hollywood royalty.

    The Apartment (1960)

    Winner of 5 Oscars, directed by Billy Wilder, starring Jack Lemmon, Shirley MacLaine, and Fred McMurray. This film could be better-described as a drama with comedic overtones, since the core story is rather serious, sometimes shocking. I didn't know much about it, but its influence on other films & TV jumped out at me e.g. Mad Men, Working Girl etc. If you haven't seen it, I won't spoil it: I'll just say that the first half had me wondering how this could be a comedy, since the situation being set up has the potential to go very wrong.

    @[email protected]

    We are afraid to put men to live and trade each on his own private stock of reason; because we suspect that this stock in each man is small.

    -- Edmund Burke

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  • Registered Users Posts: 3,116 ✭✭✭ shrapnel222

    Triangle of sadness

    Latest film from Ostlund, a director i love since force majeure. This latest film won the palme d'or last year. A satire of the super rich which imo falls a bit short. whilst there are great moments during the film, at 2h30m, it's overly long and doesn't live up to expectations. Enjoyable but slightly Disappointing.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,171 ✭✭✭ Decuc500

    Violent City

    One of the many films Charles Bronson (the greatest film star of the 1970’s) made in Europe.

    This 1970 ‘Euro Crime’ film directed by Sergio Sollima has Brosnan as a professional killer who is double crossed and left for dead. He goes to New Orleans to get revenge on his former boss.

    The opening is set in the Virgin Islands and the first 10 minutes is a dialogue free car chase through tiny, winding village streets. It’s thrilling stuff, on a par with the car chases in films like The French Connection and The Seven-Ups.

    I was expecting the film to be a bit cheesy but it’s actually really well made. There a number of impressive set pieces. You can see that it influenced Italian Giallo filmmakers. The score is by Ennio Morricone, always a bonus.

    88 Films released this on Blu-ray with a 4K remastered transfer which looks incredible.

  • Registered Users Posts: 27,260 ✭✭✭✭ CastorTroy

    I did a rewatch of This is England a couple years ago with the intention of rewatching 86 and 88 before starting 90. I still need to watch the series. Must do that soon.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3 Elaineharte

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,116 ✭✭✭ shrapnel222

    it's on at the cinema or can be found online in places i don't think we're allowed to talk about here

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 29,955 CMod ✭✭✭✭ pixelburp

    The Conversation (1974)

    Contained possibly the best jump scare, at just the right moment, in any film not from the Horror genre.

    A sad little tale of the impossibility in maintaining professionalism and emotional detachment when one's expertise requires invading the lives of others. Going double when one heard not just the salacious - but potentially criminal. This wasn't necessarily an original idea of course: many stories of voyeurism have often indulged in that creeping obsession and mania that ultimately overwhelmed their respective Peeping Toms; but here, Francis Ford Coppola's careful and subtle hand never indulged in any kind of schlock or sleaze you might see with Brian DePalma's own treatment of All Things Voyeur.

    Instead, Gene Hackman's lead remained a dour, repressed & lonely man throughout; utterly at odds within his professional field of snoopers, increasingly isolated as much by his own acerbic personality as any dogged hunt for a suspected conspiracy. A growling contradiction of a man, one who bristled at the most trivial reveal of his past among peers - while he obsessively - and loudly - replayed the titular conversation on his speakers, for his own intrusive deliberation.

  • Moderators, Arts Moderators Posts: 23,506 Mod ✭✭✭✭ TICKLE_ME_ELMO

    A Bunch of Amateurs

    This is a documentary about an amateur film society in Bradford. Around since the 1930s, they're apparently the oldest such club in the world. In recent years membership has dwindled, funds are low, and they're basically struggling to keep going.

    The description of this film implies that it's about them trying to remake Oklahoma! in an effort to save the club. That is not where the focus lies, although it does feature one member remaking the opening scene of Oklahoma, but he's too old to ride a horse, so they have to green screen it.

    What it's really about though is this group of people who seem to rely on the weekly club meetings as their main social outlet. We see early on two of the oldest members have sick spouses, and another younger man is a carer for his adult brother, and basically a lot of them don't seem to have much else going on outside the club.

    It's fly on the wall style, and all very natural, and I found a lot of it quite moving. It doesn't actually focus that much on cinema really, and is more about the people.

  • Moderators, Arts Moderators, Regional Abroad Moderators Posts: 10,754 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Fysh


    Caught this streaming on Shudder and am in two minds about it. It's a found footage film whose premise is that a disgraced streamer seeks to rebuild his audience by streaming himself staying alone in a haunted house for a night.

    In production terms it's well done - I appreciated how the setup is used to provide and justify a number of different camera perspectives, and the story has enough developments to keep things moving once it gets going - personally I found the first half hour to be too slow.

    The problem, for me, is that it's too accurate to what streamers are like - complete with the constant over the top reactions and screaming at every prompt; I find a bunch of the emergent default behaviours of streamers to be irritating to watch, and that's true here as well.

    If you can see past that, however, there's a lot to like - this is very much "What if Evil Dead 2 but in the 2020s and Ash is a Youtuber trying to rebuild his audience?" as a premise, and I must admit that irritating protagonist notwithstanding there were several moments that made me laugh out loud.

    If you like Evil Dead 2, there's a lot to like here. This is probably the best thing I've seen inspired by ED2 since Rob Kemp's The Elvis Dead.

  • Sick (2022)

    A typically modest runtime slasher effort whose main distinction is its 2020 early pandemic setting. The opening is a bit different also compared to many similar genre movies. Tight enough overall. Worth a watch if you're in the mood for something like that but obviously not expecting anything ground-breaking either.

  • Registered Users Posts: 11,723 ✭✭✭✭ McDermotX

    Funny. Actually watched this a couple nights back myself when stuck in a 'what to watch' mood. Decided to stick it on based on some references to Evil Dead 2 and Army of Darkness in some comments on IMDB.

    I think it's largely poor, due to the annoying lead and premise, but I get it.....there are more than a few laughs, and more than a few moments where you think of Raimi's efforts, as if you were seeing them in a POV manner. I mean there are straight scenes when the ghost/witch/Mildred is jumping on his back and such or sticking her fingernail up his nose that if you closed your eyes and just listened, you'd swear it was Ash taking another few poundings.

    Might be worth a watch despite the lousy premise for fans of the Evil Dead alright, but won't sit with casual viewers I'd say.

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  • Moderators, Arts Moderators, Regional Abroad Moderators Posts: 10,754 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Fysh

    See, I'm genuinely curious what people who are more tolerant (or even into) streamers and youtubers would make of it, because I know part of my annoyance with it was a visceral dislike of the main character - but it's a fairly solid satire of that kind of character, as far as I can tell. Now, how much overlap there is between "viewers who like PewDiePie and his ilk" and "viewers who like Evil Dead 2" is something I couldn't tell you :D

    I do think it could have done with tighter editing, which I'd expect is the result of being done by the same people who wrote, directed and produced the film. As far as horror films about streamers go, I think Spree is better.

  • Moderators, Arts Moderators, Regional Abroad Moderators Posts: 10,754 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Fysh

    I decided I needed something with more substance for my next watch, so I stuck on Daughters of the Dust on BFI Player (one of numerous films on the recent Sight & Sound Best Films Of All Time that's available on the subscription, for anyone interested). I've been meaning to watch it for ages, and am really glad I did - it's an excellent watch. It's the second film (after Welcome II The Terrordrome) to feature the Ibo Landing mass suicides as a narrative element, although Daughters feels like much more optimistic film than Terrordrome.

  • Registered Users Posts: 12,821 ✭✭✭✭ bnt

    An oldie but a goodie: Caddyshack. I don’t think I ever watched the whole thing, and thought it holds together remarkably well. The story is all over the place, but that works for the characters, who are equally shambolic.

    @[email protected]

    We are afraid to put men to live and trade each on his own private stock of reason; because we suspect that this stock in each man is small.

    -- Edmund Burke

  • Confess, Fletch (2022)

    Once one is not too precious about the originals this quite different interpretation is a perfectly good light entertainment caper. I liked it (and far more than the ass onion which is another film in the same vein)

  • Registered Users Posts: 146 ✭✭ monkeyactive

    Vengeance (2022)

    A very enjoyable low budget comedy/whodunnit style drama with some well earned deeper moments of poignancy as well.

    Pokes a good few jibes at the US Culture Wars which is always a good thing. Line for line scene by scene its easy watching that pulls the odd chuckle.


  • Registered Users Posts: 10,129 ✭✭✭✭ Slydice

    Watched Barbarian. It was alright but felt like it was let down in the scary making department somehow.

    Maybe in the contrast to how some scenes and the atmosphere felt really well done and then something like dropping the ball for the scary parts.

  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 29,955 CMod ✭✭✭✭ pixelburp

    Mad God (2021)

    The term "nightmare fuel" has become somewhat glib, maybe even overused these days within social media & pop-culture; so this film's swing into full and constant grotesquery was such I found myself genuinely wondering if it might induce nightmares - but then again: what could my own subconscious possibly conjure up during the night that'd trump this cinematic delirium of disgusting, arresting imagery?

    Aggressively abstract while also relentlessly macabre, often simply upsetting in places to a degree this handily qualified as something that was "not for everyone", to put it mildly; Every scene was slathered in a sheen of viscera, every set-piece one affront to the senses after another. An overwhelming cavalcade of twisted surrealism - and I couldn't take my eyes off it. Though I will say that such was the commitment to the unreality powered by stop-motion, the few instances where flesh & blood actors were used were very jarring - it kinda broke the spell when it happened. While the last "act", such as it was, left me more confused than engaged.

    By that point though, I had already found myself wondering "is this it? Is this actually going anywhere?" It wasn't as if I was expecting or demanding a coherent narrative, or some satisfying pay-off, but there was a point where the thin framing device appeared to be completely abandoned. The back-half of the movie became ... well, a bit tedious if I'm being honest. By then, the precision engineered squick had numbed my senses somewhat, so without that emotive reaction what remained became more of a meaningless slog than anything else.

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,377 ✭✭✭✭ Tony EH


    Have to admit I was pretty bored to tears by that. The movie, not your post 😋. But, as a one time animator myself, I've always found a lot of stop motion animated productions devoid of entertainment, while still holding a certain fascination from a technique perspective. The Brothers Quay being a prominent example.

    Animation of that type is usually fine as a small scale curiosity piece, the likes of some Pixar stuff being an exception (the good stuff anyway). But elsewhere I often find myself drifting. Even some Aardman productions could leave me looking at the clock.

  • Moderators, Arts Moderators, Regional Abroad Moderators Posts: 10,754 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Fysh

    That's slightly disappointing to read about Mad God - I'll still watch it but had hoped it had more to offer.

    I watched Harpoon last night on Arrow Player; it was a nicely-executed little thriller reminiscent of Shallow Grave (complete with opening monologue about friendship). It does its thing with aplomb, has good performances and production values and wraps up in a tad under 80 minutes.

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  • Moderators, Arts Moderators Posts: 23,506 Mod ✭✭✭✭ TICKLE_ME_ELMO

    Decision To Leave

    I'm trying to watch some of the most likely nominees for Best International Feature at this year's Oscars. Along with All Quiet, and Argentina 1985, this one seems to be on everyone's guaranteed list.

    I didn't love it. It is way too long, for starters, and I kept waiting for a bigger twist than the ones that came. It does look fantastic, and the lead actress is very good, plus Korean films do seem to do well with the Academy, so I won't be at all surprised to see it nominated. I don't think it's all that great though. I'd definitely put The Quiet Girl in the nominations over this.