Re: What was the last movie you watched?

Dyland wrote:

it seemed like the crude humor was gonna be on max...

I skip most animated movies due to the cheap humor they use as filler, but I didn't find that to be the case here for the most part. It was a decent heart-felt movie with a good message. My biggest problem was too much nonstop action with fast cutting, and hard to orient to what was happening, at the expense of much character development. I felt like they should have removed the red and black dudes from the ninja team, since they had no character whatsoever. And I know that would have bothered fans of the show, but having never seen the show myself, they contributed nothing to the movie and just took up space.

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?

thistof wrote:

I felt like they should have removed the black dude from the ninja team

That would have been a little ironic if they did, since the black ninja (Cole) was actually the leader of the ninja team before the arrival of the green ninja mini/lol

But I agree with you that there wasn't nearly enough character development. I definitely think that it would have been possible to develop them enough if the movie had had an average running time, but that would have of course involved A LOT more work, which I'm sure Lego was not willing to do. But I think the one thing that bugged me the most was the complete absence of any spinjitzu! It made no sense to me as to how they thought they could create a movie based off of a TV show called Lego Ninjago - Masters of spinjitzu if they don't include any! I'm also not really a fan of how they've been becoming more and more lenient with putting minifigures and such in impossible positions. The great thing about TLM (and something which I hope they continue in the sequel) was that there was only 1 or 2 very tiny 'illegal' moves in the animation, and os it made it seem a lot more like atop-motion. However, they've now been doing a lot more of these 'illegal' moves and it takes a little bit of the magic away from these movies.

Anyway, that's all I have to say mini/wink

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?

GHB wrote:

Blade Runner 2049

This was stunning, absolutely mind-blowing. Definitely my favorite movie of the year. Like Chris Stuckmann said on his review channel, this film is what inspires people to make movies. It most certainly did that for me. Everything in this film is so polished and story-driven. I won't say anymore, just go see this beauty.

Despite the amount of good reviews that there have been of BR 2049, I for one was not so pleased with it, especially with all the hype from people who saw it soon after it came out. Here's why:

First of all, like the original, the majority of it (so basically everything but the very beginning and end) was slow paced, which in itself isn't too bad, but the problem I had was that unlike the original not a lot happened here, especially in the second act. That's not to say stuff didn't happen, but it was pretty easy in my opinion to lose interest pretty quickly, as it didn't really try to make things all too exciting.

Secondly, the storyline itself for most of the first two acts was really interesting, but then as the end of the second act and the third act approached, things started to get very confusing, and I found the plot twist very unconvincing and a tad ridiculous, as it then relies on a lot of 'conveniences' through how certain parts are shot and how the story flows,

Spoiler (click to read)

for example, I find it very convenient that k never stays anything to Deckard when they're in Deckards 'hideout' about him being his long lost son, which is what K believes at the time, and the child by the fire did not look anything like a girl, which made it very hard for me to believe it.

Finally, the problem that really stood out for me was the use of the giant hologram and the statues in Las Vegas, which in my opinion were unnecessary, as while I was expecting things like that to be in a Blade Runner film having seen the original, I do think that there was still too much of it. Those who see the film will know what I'm talking about.

Oh, and the blackout was never explained, which I thing was a poor decision, as some background on that event could have really helped this movie.

Now, despite what I have said, there were some things that I enjoyed about the movie, for example Deckards character and what the story was mainly about, especially with the sort of cliff-hanger at the end. However, I much prefer the original to this, and i don't think I'll be watching this again, which is a shame, since I was hoping that the sequel would be a great continuation in the series/story.

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?

Dragon Brick Studios wrote:

[Blade Runner 20149] relies on a lot of 'conveniences' through how certain parts are shot and how the story flows,

Spoiler (click to read)

for example, I find it very convenient that k never stays anything to Deckard when they're in Deckards 'hideout' about him being his long lost son, which is what K believes at the time, and the child by the fire did not look anything like a girl, which made it very hard for me to believe it.

These are things that are either explained in the movie or perfectly in-character.

Spoiler (click to read)

K is extremely reluctant and scared of the idea that he is the natural-born offspring of Deckard and Rachel (as evidenced by his reaction to the wooden horse). And his priority was to find the facts of the case rather than personally confront Deckard on what he believes to be true.

Dragon Brick Studios wrote:

Finally, the problem that really stood out for me was the use of the giant hologram and the statues in Las Vegas, which in my opinion were unnecessary, as while I was expecting things like that to be in a Blade Runner film having seen the original, I do think that there was still too much of it. Those who see the film will know what I'm talking about.

Spoiler (highlight to read)The statues in Las Vegas were just to establish how large of scope Las Vegas was, and the film never holds on them for too long.

The use of the giant hologram is literally an essential character moment. The hologram's advertisement says "Everything you want to see/hear!" This casts doubt for K and potentially means that the entire relationship with Joi was all BS, and everything she said was just K's inner monologue prompting him to go on this journey. That is fascinating stuff.

Re: What was the last movie you watched?

Chris W. wrote:
Spoiler (click to read)

K is extremely reluctant and scared of the idea that he is the natural-born offspring of Deckard and Rachel (as evidenced by his reaction to the wooden horse). And his priority was to find the facts of the case rather than personally confront Deckard on what he believes to be true.

Okay, that's fair enough, but I think that there could have been a little bit more emphasis on that.

Chris W. wrote:
Spoiler (highlight to read)The statues in Las Vegas were just to establish how large of scope Las Vegas was, and the film never holds on them for too long.

The use of the giant hologram is literally an essential character moment. The hologram's advertisement says "Everything you want to see/hear!" This casts doubt for K and potentially means that the entire relationship with Joi was all BS, and everything she said was just K's inner monologue prompting him to go on this journey. That is fascinating stuff.

What I was trying to say was that regardless of what the purpose of the statues and hologram was, what the statues and hologram were supposed to be were unnecessary, as they could have based them off of something else. I just find it to be a lame excuse for including that sort of stuff, and it doesn't really help with trying to positively promote women in film.

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?

Justice League

I don't want to be too harsh because the movie itself wasn't that bad but it certainly has major issues. The main problem comes in the first 30-40 minutes. The setting changes every 2-3 minutes and it made me feel dizzy and confused as to where the film was. Snyder's theme seems to be "constant change" because there are random moments when the shot changes several times over the course of just a second or two in moments when it is totally unnecessary.

Spoiler (click to read)

like when superman returns home, there is potentially a great moment when he reunites with his family, only for the hug to change camera angle about 5 times across 3 seconds.

I felt like some of the characters had great potential. First, Victor was seemingly the only character with any decent arc.

Spoiler (click to read)

His character was conflicted and confused and was eventually able to overcome his issues. The Flash was actually a very similar character to Victor, but his weakness was...bugs? Or was it social anxiety? It is unclear because neither created a real problem for him.

Other characters, like Batman and Wonder Woman, never had any personal conflicts to begin with or at least, they were issues that were stupid easy to resolve.

However, I also should mention that I was actually impressed by the visual style that was implemented. I haven't seen any of the other DC movies in this series but I thought the visual style certainly was an attempt to replicate a more comic book-like feel. Unfortunately, they may have also borrowed other comic book elements that did NOT translate well to the screen.

3.5/10

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?

Star Wars Episode VIII - The Last Jedi

I'm not gonna sugar coat it: this was almost my first walk-out... almost.

Poe Dameron, just as in The Force Awakens, is not an original character, but rather a total rip-off of Starlord from Guardians of the Galaxy... until he changes, that is. Overall, I still hate a lot of the writing and, if I was to do a fan edit of The Last Jedi, I'd only be left with about 40 minutes of footage at most. It's slow, has a lot of filler, casts the rebellion/resistance in a bit of a bad  light, and causes me to root for the empire/first order in some occasions (Rogue: One did this as well.)

However, things changed about 3/4ths of the way through:

Spoiler (highlight to read)Yoda's appearance marks a turning point in the film. Not just story wise, but also, in character development, writing,
and overall tone. Beforehand, things are rather poorly executed (like Snoke's room that looks like an even cheaper set than on a Flash Gordon movie) But, afterwards, things begin finally feeling like "Star Wars" again. And, overall, it's MUCH more worth it to sit through than Rogue: One.

The best parts of this movie have to be Carrie Fisher's scenes. Princess/General Leia is SO great, not only as a performance here, but also her tie-in to the plot. Similarly, Mark Hamill actually speaks - and has some really epic moments.

Fin & Ray are a bit better than in The Force Awakens here, and Kylo kinda steals the show.

Also, there was WAY too much "comedy" in this, if you can even call it that. If you hated Jar Jar, you'll give him a second chance after all of the thrown in child-fodder, cocky but actually jerky and distracting running gags, and dad jokes thrown heavily throughout...

I'd have to do a full-blown review, going scene by scene to truly give my overall thoughts on the picture: but for now, I think I can perfectly sum up my overall thoughts on the film by this:

It was a packed theater. The credits came up and about 15% began clapping. The rest was completely silent apart from a few moans.

The movie isn't bad, but, I'd definitely recommend waiting until it's on Netflix or something before watching it - unless, like me, you've just gotta see that opening crawl on the big screen.

For true fans, as well as the casual moviegoer though, I'd recommend a pass. It's not horrible (especially in the 3rd act) but, it's certainly no Empire like some reviewers would have you believe. Honestly, I don't even think it's prequel quality. Episode III was, for the most part, better than this - by a mile.

I'd give the last 3rd a 3.5/5 stars, but the overall film only gets a 2.5/5 from me. Not bad, but almost forgettable...

Re: What was the last movie you watched?

I think that The Last Jedi was a worthy addition to the trilogy. They're trying up loose ends of the Skywalker story with a good ending and new characters. I like how it's relating back to the originals and the prequels. I'd say it's similar to episode 5 in that it's a bridge between two movies instead of a beginning or a conclusion.

Spoiler (highlight to read)The sub-plot of visiting the casino and getting into the ship was a bit frustrating to me because it seemed like a time waster and too simplistic. We've seen thugs in bars before. It almost felt like a Star Wars Rebels episode in that it had a simple plot and a clearly defined moral. The trampling of the city then marking it up to "it's what they deserve" felt far too simplistic and inconsequential. Is that really up to Finn and Rose to decide what this town deserves? In the end, the sub-plot was almost inconsequential except that it introduced Rose.

However, I did love the Yoda parts. A great addition to the movie. I like how it tied in even to the prequels in a way. Yoda was talking about how Luke failed Kylo, and Yoda knew what failure was, because he had failed Anakin all those years ago.

So basically, I'm one of those people who liked the movie. It was enjoyable to watch and makes me anticipate the next movie. I'd say it has more re-watch value too (especially than Rogue One) because of it's good pacing and story. Maybe it is a bit forgettable, but I think that once the series wraps up, it'll be an important part.

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?

rioforce wrote:

It was enjoyable to watch and makes me anticipate the next movie. I'd say it has more re-watch value too (especially than Rogue One) because of it's good pacing and story.


Well put, rio. I wholeheartedly agree. I may have come off a bit negative with my review, but honestly, I don't regret seeing it. I mean, it IS Star Wars after all!

Although, now that I think about it, The Last Jedi was lacking in odd wipes and transitions... hmm.

Re: What was the last movie you watched?

Dyland wrote:

Although, now that I think about it, The Last Jedi was lacking in odd wipes and transitions... hmm.

Was it now? I noticed a few horizontal wipes and even some weird crossfades we haven't seen before. Maybe there are a lot more in the other movies and I just never noticed them haha

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?

I haven't seen TLJ, but I noticed the same was true in TFA. They used a lot fewer wipes and opted instead for several sound bridges, which didn't fit the classic Star Wars editing style. It was a big departure from the established form of the series, and along with Abrams' whipping the camera around instead of thinking out his shots, it made for some sloppy directing imho. It was a pretty decent fan fic movie though.

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?

thistof wrote:

It was a pretty decent fan fic movie though.

^
My thoughts on the rebooted Disney Star Wars canon. I SO miss the old canon, although, Kylo is a good enough character to help me get over it while watching the films... It's just afterwards when I remember and cry mini/tongue

Re: What was the last movie you watched?

Yeah I wasn't into much outside of the movies, but I don't like them telling fans what is and isn't canon. Of course, I probably would have done the same thing if I got control of Star Wars mini/tongue

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?

Dyland wrote:

the overall film only gets a 2.5/5 from me. Not bad, but almost forgettable...

Well, time to fix this...

Star Wars Episode VIII - The Last Jedi

First of all I'm going to just say that this is now my second favourite star wars film (with Rogue One being my favourite - and I personally find Rogue One to be very re-watchable, to be honest I would rather watch Rogue One than any of the OT any day...). So yes, I enjoyed this much more than ESB, but then again I never understood the amount of praise that ESB receives, I mean my favourite OT movie is ROTJ...

Anyway, on with the review...

First of all, I'm going to start off with the negatives. I'll completely agree with Dyland on the fact that the pacing was very off, as the first half or two thirds starts off fairly slow and then it speeds up very quickly at the end. I'll also agree that they went over kill on the comedy too. Speaking of which, I felt that Hux was used more for comedic purposes and never really showed the more callous side to him that we saw in TFA. On the topic of wasted characters, unfortunately Phasma was another. While we did get to see her in some awesome action against Finn, like TFA she did not get enough screen time, which was a shame, as in the comics and books her character is amazing. I personally really liked Poe in this film, and while I must admit that his comedy at the start felt a lot more like Star-lords comedy, I do think that he was mostly his own character in this. I was hoping for a more epic battle on Crait as well, but Crait was still a great part of the movie.

Now on to the things that I loved...

Aside from Hux and Phasma, almost all of the other characters were ABSOLUTELY FANTASTIC. Kylo Ren was probably the best out of all of them, but I really loved the paths of all of the characters and everything about them. I actually really liked the fact that the Resistance was presented as disorganised and chaotic, as it shows how things can go wrong very easily (even for the good guys) without the right communication and leadership (although I thought that Holdos character was pretty good). Most of all though, I think that this movie overall is a pure and true representation of what Star Wars is all about, where you've got literally a small group of 'rebels' (and quite literally as well, unlike in the OT where the might of the Rebellion is like that of the Empire compared to the might of the resistance by the end of the movie) who are in a dire situation and are on the brink of destruction from a rising darkness. I thought that most of the writing for everything was excellent too.

Spoiler (click to read)

I also was pleasantly surprised by the fact that Yoda was a puppet, and also what Yoda said and did, in my opinion it's the Yoda that we should have seen in ROTJ. I was also deeply shocked by the deaths of Snoke and Luke, as I figured that there was no way that they would kill either of them in this movie, however I felt that their deaths were executed perfectly. Rian Johnson really got me attached to the characters too, and on Crait I genuinely thought that Finn was going to die.

Overall I think that this is one of the best Star Was movies ever, and is a must see for any Star Wars fan. Personally, nobody has any reason to dislike this movie as a whole, because IT'S AMAZING!!! 9/10 rating.

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?

A Christmas Story Live

IT's amazing what production values went into this to make something on this scale as a 3-hour live performance, with musical numbers added!  Matthew Brodderick is in it as adult Ralphie, relating his memories in the house, without the other people aware of his presence.  The Little Orphan Annie decoder ring subplot was missing but other than that, the rest of the movie was all there.  They added the theme about earning the nice list and Ralphie working to get the Red Ryder gun.

Very very cool, and something you just don't see these days.  I think the last live movie like this was Failsafe (2000).  I recorded that when it aired, too.

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?

STAR WARS EPISODE VIII: HE LAST JEDI

It's wonderful when everything is right with the world.  It's Christmastime (and we're in the midst of Hannukah), Net Neutrality was just repealed, and now Star Wars: The Lest Jedi is in theaters.  I've seen every ordinal Star Wars movie within a week of its release, and this one is jam packed with action and depth.  I'm fresh off seeing it and I'm still on cloud nine, but as my euphoria asides, I'll write my detailed thoughts on the film.  What I can tell you now is that it even tops Empire Strikes Back, my formerly favorite Star Wars movie.  Just go see it and enjoy.

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?

Star Wars Episode VIII - The Last Jedi

How a felt watching the movie- being whiplashed between a few good movies.

Pros- Good acting, good characters, good action, and decent showing of the characters developing, and decent tension.

Cons- Mainly poor choices in the editing of scene transitions, for example in one of the earlier ones the way the cut immediately after a line I was expecting the following scene to have some connection to the line, but it was just a rushed switch to another storyline. They either needed to cut between similar or related action, or let scenes calm down enough that the transition doesn't whiplash you out of immersion for a few seconds (that or put in the monty python "now for something completely different" guy mini/tongue ).
Beyond that, just some unfitting music choices on the island scenes (like dramatic tense music during the "luke's daily routine" scene killed what the visuals and pace suggested the mood should have been) and the contrived tension between the vice admiral and Poe

Spoiler (click to read)

just because she never explained her plan beyond what sounded like suicide, even after he objected

.

Re: What was the last movie you watched?

Revisiting The Dark Knight Trilogy

For the 10th anniversary of The Dark Knight, I decided to watch the trilogy again; having been a few years since I last sat down and watched them all consecutively night-to-night. There's no doubt just how monumental the trilogy was to filmmaking & the superhero genre in particular - and I wanted to see how they all held up in the wake of the dreaded MCU and the unimaginative filmmaking that's come since.

To preface; I've never been a huge fan of the Chris Nolan trilogy. While I do think that Christopher Nolan is a great filmmaker (especially the way he's able to wrap up a story in the third act), and Christian Bale is, no doubt, a great actor - I've always preferred the Burton/Schumacher series. Not because I grew up with it (I didn't), but, I just think they're simply more entertaining. I miss the spectacle, charm, and imagination the older superhero flicks had, compared to today's dark & bleak interpretation of comics in reality. But to each their own. Although IMO film, at its core, is escapism of the darkness of our own world; I won't knock hardened realism - especially when it allows films like Goodfellas and The Dark Knight to grace our screens. Just thought I'd get that out of the way first, as so no one misunderstands my assessments.

A further note: Although I wasn't necessarily a fanboy of the Nolanverse, I did enjoy them. I mean, REALLY enjoy them. Upon last viewings of these films (3 or so years ago), I even started liking Batman Begins MORE than The Dark Knight; because of its richer color pallet, monorail-laiden Gotham City, and overall uniqueness with it's slightly more tropey and fictionalized interpretation compared to its sequels. And, in recent years, I had began disliking Ledger's preformance - mostly because of just how much it ended up perverting the character in future interpretations (like Leto's preformance, and the horrid looking Pheonix interpretation on the horizon...) A great final preformance, nevertheless; but one tainted by the faceless, tattooed, insane psychopath versions who've nearly decapitated the Nicholson, Hamill, and Romero preformances of old.

Without further ado; my reviews.

Batman Begins

This one shocked me the most, since, if you'd asked me just a couple of years ago, I would have listed this as my favorite of the Nolan trilogy. I hated it this time. Like, really, really was disinterested. It struggled to hold my attention through it's slow paced origin spin. Honestly, now I can see why so many others hated superhero origin retellings after this film. For such an iconic character like Batman, it's inevitable that people are going to go into the theater biased. Especially since comics appeal to children; the moviegoer brings with him every previous encounter with the character into their understanding of the reboot. It's impossible to forget playing with action figures on the carpet, watching the caped crusaders escape the Riddler's minotaur maze game, or hearing the Adam West-era theme every Halloween. And, although one can try to leave their mind open for a reimagining, its impossible for them not to bring their history
with Batman into a new film. Especially when said character has had 79 years of history.

Begins seemed more connected with the superhero films of today than I had anticipated. And, while that may seem like it held up well, quite the opposite to me. I hate the MCU, despise the Snider-verse, and loath what CW calls entertainment. Batman Begins seemed to nearly fit in. The quips seemed more obvious, and the entire Rachel romance subplot was just too placid to be interesting. While the Scarecrow was better than I remember, I thought that the entire Middle-East/Asia & Ra's Al Ghul angle was so John Wick/Karate Movie cliched that it kind of distracted from the otherwise realistic interpretation. (Bring the one flower to the top of the mountian... God, it's SO Samauri Jack it hurts!)

The action, although brief, was interesting. The cg effects were fairly obvious, but didn't distract in the way that obvious cg normally does. And the music was better than I remember. Although, I'd take a real theme over ostinati and leitmotifs any day. (Another thing comatose in the modern film era.)

The color grading seemed pretty distracting to me, as the film shifts from a rich gold hue to a dull teal back and forth many times. I didn't remember it being THAT stark and differing before. However, otherwise, the film wasn't that bad (although I didn't really enjoy it). I'd give it a 3 out of 5, maybe 2.5 out of 5. I definitely preferred it years ago, and don't have as much affection now.

The Dark Knight

And here... we... go! This film needs few words. It's better than I remembered. All of the bad it ushered in is completely forgotten while watching & reflecting afterwards. Ledger's performance: I take everything I've ever said about back. It's stunning. As is everybody else in the picture. It's as if every actor is on their A-game. The movie has impeccable pacing. It moves from great scene to great scene to great scene, without a stop in between. There's a reason this film has such high ratings - it's a masterpiece of cinema, and I loved it even more now than I ever did before!

Some things to note, though:

Rewatching this film, there were many aspects I realized that people have misinterpreted since. Some of which are so painful, because they completely misunderstand and subvert the true genius of what's actually going on. I thought I'd address these one by one...

It's all part of the plan
    The Joker didn't have a plan. That's the entire point of that speech. So many who parody, reference, and debate about exactly what the Joker's plan was are missing the point. He's an agent of chaos. There is, and never was, a plan. He LITERALLY says that if he announced what he was going to do, no one would be scared. But by killing just one little person, it seems random to the general populous - which creates a panic. Please stop getting this wrong; as it shows that you just didn't pay attention to what the character was actually about - which does nothing to honor Ledger's legacy.

The Joker won't kill Batman
    This one's a bit more subjective, however, there's evidence that the whole "Joker wouldn't kill Batman/Needs Batman" thing is another misrepresentation. Sure, the Joker says "you complete me," however, this could easily just be him playing mind games with Batman. Reverse psychology, if you will. Later in the film, the Joker begins beating Batman senseless as he's prone on the ground being attacked by dogs. Beating him with a crowbar in a disadvantaged position could have easily killed Batman. I don't think the Joker would have done that had there been a good chance death could have resulted. What would the modern "can't kill Batman" Joker do if he killed Batman? I don't know; I just know that that's not Heath Ledger's interpretation. His motivations are more Nicholson-like than I at first thought.

Terrorist Joker
    This, too, has been misunderstood from the film. Many see the Joker as an in-it-for-himself terrorist, who's messing with the order (both cops and mobsters) just to create chaos. But while we've already established that the Joker doesn't have a plan; that doesn't mean he's a freelance terrorist. To the FBI, probably - but not to us within the confines of the story. Him sending in his tapes to the media news, and "calling in" to put a hit on Reese are actually just modernizations of the original 1939 mobster Joker character - who'd pre-announce his crimes over the radio, and still commit them anyway. That Joker, too, didn't have bias to police or crooks; but rather screwed with all equally. And he wasn't insane. He knew what he was doing. That's what made THAT Joker scary. That's what made Nicholson scary. That's what makes Ledger's Joker scary.

    Also, Gordon, part-way through, mention's the Joker's "mob lawyers" - implying that the Joker, indeed, is a mobster. Not a terrorist. A one-man crime syndicate, perhaps. But one nevertheless. I mean, how else did he get his henchemen in the begining of the film? And what does he do with the henchmen he acquires throughout the rest of the film? - He's not pulling a gang out of his a**, I can tell you that! There's more going on here; and had Ledger not unfortunately passed away, I bet we would have been given more of this aspect of his character. Perhaps in another dimension...

Some other things I noticed, that were misunderstandings on my part:

A lot more people die in this film than I remember
    But it is a long movie.

The Aspect-Ratio changes are a bit distracting
    I always remembered the screen size shifting between the 2.35:1 film footage and full-frame imax footage (both of which are beautifully shot, btw). But this time, it just seemed a bit too obvious to me. And, I thought only the Dark Knight Rises had that problem.

Not all is as it seems
    Before, I was certain that the gun The Joker hands to Two-Face was loaded, and the detanators on the two ships actually blew up the other ship, and Batman & Gordon, while lying, did the right thing in keeping the symbol of Harvey Dent alive. But boy was I mistaken! Had the gun the Joker gave to Two-Face NOT been loaded - it just makes the Joker's manipulative nature all the more apparent and evil! What if the detonators actually destroyed their own ship! - Now, that's a twist - and a real Joker experiment! And, Gordon just watched Dent nearly kill his family. Then, he has to go around, standing in front of giant pictures of this man, and go out and pretend he was a good man. WOWZA that's so much darker than I realized it was. To stare into that face every year, and pretend he was good. Lie, for the greater good. Wow... just wow.

The Dark Knight Rises

Going into this one, I was worried I was going to cry during it's climax. The Dark Knight Rises was the first Batman film (maybe even first superhero flick) I saw in theaters. While I remember the posters & commercials & toys & anticipation for the Dark Knight as well (very foldly, might I add... Dominoes Gotham City Pizza, anyone?), I especially remembered such things for The Dark Knight Rises. It was the first time I followed movie news online in anticipation. It was the first time I saw behind-the-scenes on set pictures before going to the theater. It was the last time I enjoyed myself at a new superhero flick in theaters... And, while I was surprised to dislike Batman Begins upon rewatching, and ended up loving The Dark Knight even more than I had originally, I was anxious to see Rises again. As if so much was at stake in this conclusion to the trilogy. (And it IS such a polarizing film, after all.)

While The Dark Knight seemed to go from great scene to great scene to great scene, The Dark Knight Rises falters in a few places - which is where I think it gets a lot of its detractors. The Dark Knight is such a hard act to follow, and, because of Heath Ledger's death, I feel that Chris Nolan didn't even try to top it. Rises seems to go in a completely different direction than the series was headed - and seems to rely on flashbacks in both plot and presentation to Begins for a lot of the story; Essentially bookending the trilogy exactly where it started. While some might not appreciate this, I kind of like this notion.

As for the film, I think it still holds up. And I still really enjoyed it. While perhaps not to the same level of The Dark Knight, I do think Rises tops Begins. There are simply too many great scenes, great preformances, and excellent storytelling moments for me to dislike this movie. I find Bane both hilarious and frightening - perhaps riding the line of camp at times (as is the rest of this film), but, never taking itself too seriously - even in the face of the dark and realistic tone. I admit, it's a fine line to ride, but IMO Rises did it. BTW, I think that Hathaway's preformance as Catwoman is probably the most comic accurate one yet. Pfeiffer's interpretation, while also hauntingly brilliant, isn't really a cat burgalar. Her story revolves more around revenge. Hathaway's Catwoman is a jewel thief looking for a way out - brilliant.

Plus, the music on this one is perhaps my favorite. Nothing against James Newton Howard (who composed the music to my favorite film, Atlantis: The Lost Empire), but, Zimmer really shines on his own here. Catwoman's theme, especially, is something of a cross between a classic Femme Fatale motif and the sound of a cat wondering over a piano. Beautiful, slow, and creeping. Bane's Deshi Basara, too, has a great backbone beat, and the chants, while not to the same operatic majesty as something like Duel of the Fates, is still breathtaking. I'd love to hear these films in surround sound!

Conclusion

I'd rank them: Dark Knight, Dark Knight Rises, Batman Begins on a scale of best to worst. As for stars, I'd say The Dark Knight gets a solid 9 if not 10 stars, while Dark Knight Rises is about an 8/8.5 and Begins would get a 4 or 5. Regardless, I'm glad to have gotten such a rich cinematic trilogy, and while I'm not exactly thrilled with how this changed Hollywood, I do appreciate the films for what they are, love to reflect on their legacy, and enjoy remembering the nostalgia for the times of their releases. (I still remember the toy commercials, Gotham City pizza from Dominoes, and giant Ledger movie poster hanging at the checkout of my local Blockbuster).

Can't wait to revisit them all again in 2022 for the Dark Knight Rises anniversary! mini/smile

Re: What was the last movie you watched?

They Live

The last movie I (Jack) saw was They Live, an old, incredibly underrated sci-fi action flick from 1987, directed by John Carpenter about a drifter who discovers a pair of sunglasses that allow him to see that aliens walk around disguised as humans, and are subliminally enslaving and controlling humanity. Since I love movies, and this seemed less-well known, I decided to watch it.

Being an action and sci-fi enthusiast, and having immensely enjoyed the only other John Carpenter movie I've seen so far, which was Big Trouble in Little China, I thought it was right up my alley and already figured I'd enjoy it. And I did. A lot.

Don't worry, I won't give anything away. I just really, really loved it. The story was well-told and the two main protagonists were like-able, and there is a great commentary on consumerism. The action was really well-done, with some really slick shootouts, and a great fist fight sequence halfway through that goes on for 5+ minutes. The ending was, at least I thought, really well-done, and unexpected.

I think it's definitely worth watching at least once, but I will point out that it's R, and as with most action films from the 80s, there is definitely a more than necessary amount of language, and although I wasn't offended by it, I think it's important to note if it bothers you. Mainly f-words, with some s-words in there. Also, one brief instance of nudity in literally the final scene before the credits where breasts are seen, and that's all that is shown. I skipped through it, but I know that the camera cuts away from it briefly, and then cuts back again. The scene is probably 10-15 seconds in total.

Anyway, I give it 10/10, and highly recommend it for anyone who likes a good popcorn movie, and for anyone who enjoys well-made action.

Last edited by BrothersWaughStudios (October 25, 2018 (01:53pm))

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Re: What was the last movie you watched?

BrothersWaughStudios wrote:

Being an action and sci-fi enthusiast, and having immensely enjoyed the only other John Carpenter movie I've seen so far, which was Big Trouble in Little China, I thought it was right up my alley and already figured I'd enjoy it.

I absolutely LOVE Big Trouble in Little China. We had just shown it to my Grandmother a few weeks ago - and she really enjoyed it as well. Quirky, action packed, and very, very funny. Great film! mini/smile

Definitely an underrated 80's classic. And one of my all-time favorite films!

Sadly, I've seen too much of They Live to not have the plot spoiled - however, I may look into watching it sometime in the future. I'm a fan of John Carpenter's music - and am also a big wrestling fan; so it's kind of right up my alley.