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  1. #851
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    ^ I liked it, was waiting on your review to comment. Good thoughts. Add to your RIYL list: The Fight Club.
    Don’t give up until.

  2. #852
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    Quote Originally Posted by Meadow Skipper View Post
    ^ I liked it, was waiting on your review to comment. Good thoughts. Add to your RIYL list: The Fight Club.
    Funny you should mention FC. Peter Travers from RS went on about how he felt TAOSD was a weaker version of FC.
    FWIW, FC didn't even pop into my head while watching this film. When I read Travers' review I honestly felt he was reaching with that comparison. The tone of each film is vastly different, imho.
    "Man, we killin' elephants in the back yard..."

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  3. #853
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    Quote Originally Posted by dookey67 View Post
    Funny you should mention FC. Peter Travers from RS went on about how he felt TAOSD was a weaker version of FC.
    FWIW, FC didn't even pop into my head while watching this film. When I read Travers' review I honestly felt he was reaching with that comparison. The tone of each film is vastly different, imho.
    I haven’t read that review, my take was based on the swaggering, kind of campy machismo and secretive nature. I’m not sure I’d compare the two, I just was reminded of the FC while watching it.
    Don’t give up until.

  4. #854
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    I can a see the comparison with the "Night Class" element, but there was no chaos movement and the tone was a bit nastier than FC.
    FWIW, I was not taken by the RS review; dude spent way too much time revealing the plot. I have when critics tell you the whole movie in their review. It's just as bad as a trailer that gives everything away.

    I try my best to avoid trailers (except when I go to the Cineplex) and I don't read reviews until after I've written down my thoughts on a film.
    Last edited by dookey67; 09-09-2019 at 09:41 PM.
    "Man, we killin' elephants in the back yard..."

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  5. #855
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    I’ll skip PT’s review then. I hardly ever read RS anymore anyway.
    Don’t give up until.

  6. #856
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    Quote Originally Posted by Meadow Skipper View Post
    I’ll skip PT’s review then. I hardly ever read RS anymore anyway.
    I hardly ever (as in mostly never) read RS. Really haven't since the '80s.
    I was actually Googling "dark comedies like The Art of Self Defense" and PT's review came up in the Top 5 search results. I read the review thinking he might refer to some interesting dark comedies, but alas all he did was compare it to Fight Club, which never entered my mind whilst watching the film.

    Honestly, the two films that immediately jumped to my mind while watching TAOSD were A Clockwork Orange and The Karate Kid.



    And then The Lobster and After Hours.

    FWIW, writer/director Riley Steams' debut feature, FAULTS, is currently streaming on Amazon Prime. The trailer looks wicked.
    Last edited by dookey67; 08-08-2019 at 08:16 PM.
    "Man, we killin' elephants in the back yard..."

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  7. #857
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    Just for the better sound and 4K


  8. #858
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    Quote Originally Posted by dookey67 View Post
    SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME
    I largely agree with you. I went into this movie with more trepidation than excitement, but came out thinking its the best Spidey movie I've ever seen (I wasn't blown away by Spider-Verse); narrowly edging out Rami's Spider-Man 2 (still a great movie, just too Rami-y for it to escape it's director's influence and become more than Rami's take on Spider-Man, just like Burton's Batmans are too Burton-y to be more than Burton's take on Batman).

    Honestly, my only real problems with the movie are some of what you've already mentioned. I personally don't like it when the stakes for Spidey are Fantastic Four- or Avengers-level high.

    Also, it really bothered me that most of the supporting characters (except for Peter, Aunt May, Fury, and MJ... at least when she wasn't doing her 90's GenX teenager affect) behaved like they were in a comedy movie rather than an action movie. I don't mind (and actually really like) humor in my action movies (see: The Marvel Formula), but when the characters become caricatures, that's when it starts to bug me.

    And this is a complaint I have with the series as a whole, but I really hate that MJ is named MJ, Ned Leeds is named Ned Leeds, Liz Allen is named Liz Allen, and Flash Thompson is named Flash Thompson. The characters in the movie have been changed utterly from their comic counterparts to the point of being unrecognizable. And let me assure you, I don't mind the racial differences at all, and I don't mind the characters in the movies, I just wish they had given them names that didn't have roots in the comics. It either feels like ham-fisted fan service or grotesquely overt "LOOK HOW MUCH WE CARE ABOUT MARGINALIZED MINORITIES, WE CHANGED THE RACES OF BELOVED RECURRING CHARACTERS!!". Either way, the movie characters are so completely divorced from the comics versions that it just comes off as insincere and clumsy. Just change the names and introduce them as new characters and I would've been much more impressed.

    But the acting from Peter and MJ was surprisingly great. The story really felt like a Spider-Man story (albeit, an overly-epic one). And how about that "Threat or Menace?" post-credits scene?! I think I yelled "FUCK YES!!".
    Quote Originally Posted by digitaldeath View Post
    Here’s the dumbest person on tgr
    "If you don't got Olin, then your store could use some fixin'"

  9. #859
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    FAST & FURIOUS PRESENTS: HOBBS & SHAW
    4/5
    Holy Shit!
    Hobbs & Shaw is gloriously ridiculous and incredibly stupid. And when I say “stupid”, I mean “stupid fresh”.
    First up, be sure to leave your Suspension of Disbelief Barometer with the coat check girl in the lobby. Then you can just sit back and soak up the insanity.
    While not quite at the level of XxX: The Return of Xander Cage (H&S doesn’t have Donnie Yen), this film is still teeming with so much over-the-top badassness that it’s inescapably enjoyable.
    A large part and parcel of the joy of this film resides in the acting and chemistry of the four leads--Dwayne Johnson, Jason Statham, Vanessa Kirby, and Idris Elba. Each of them seems to be having a blast and while they appear to be taking the material somewhat seriously, there’s also a bit of a gleam in their eyes as if to say “yeah, we know this shit is ridiculous, but it’s still cool.” In short, they know that the entire production is a giant, multi-million dollar piss take on the action genre, but they are wholeheartedly invested. And since they are obviously with the program, you, the viewer get easily swept up on the madness. Plus, The Rock is charismatic as fuck. So is Statham. Kirby is easy on the eyes. And Elba, well, he’s Black Superman. Helen Mirren is wonderful in her brief moments on screen, too, for those looking for thespian royalty co-signers.
    While the fight scenes are bone crunching and the stunts are filled with serious WTF?!?! moments, it doesn’t hurt any that the dialogue is snappy and there’s enough dick and fart jokes bandied about to keep even Jay & Silent Bob enthralled. Additionally, the “sly” meta-moments--nods to The Italian Job, The Life Aquatic, Die Hard, and others--are actually funny and don’t fall flat or feel forced.
    If there are any faults the standouts come in the form of a couple of high profile cameos. The first is annoying, mostly because the actor in question, imho, has played himself out on social media and become a caricature of himself. The other main cameo, while it feels like a blatant plug for an upcoming blockbuster starring Johnson and the actor in question (cough, Jumanji, cough), I have to admit that I laughed for much of it. Sadly, it ended up being a bit drawn out and ultimately lost its charm. Honestly, cameos from either Kurt Russell, Michelle Rodriguez, Vin Diesel or Ludacris would have been way cooler. Heck, I woulda lost my shit if Lucas Black had shown up. Now that would have been mega meta.
    After all is said and done, this is a quintessential summer popcorn movie. It’s like an ‘80s James Bond flick on meth. And Thank God that there’s no giant explosion filled alien invasions.
    Oh yeah, stay in your seats after the last frame you wankers: there’s 3 post-credit scenes.

    RIYL
    XxX: The Return of Xander Cage; Kingsman; Fast & Furious 6; Furious 7; The Fate of the Furious
    Last edited by dookey67; 09-09-2019 at 09:42 PM.
    "Man, we killin' elephants in the back yard..."

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  10. #860
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    SCARY STORIES TO TELL IN THE DARK
    2/5
    I recently read that producer Guillermo del Toro did not wish to make a “standard” anthology film. He stated that a traditional anthology horror film is only as good as the weakest story. So, instead he decided to write a wraparound story linking all the other stories together. Somebody should have told him that an “unorthodox” anthology is only as good as the weak wraparound story holding it together. The wraparound here, involving a cringingly cliched vengeful spirit, seems to have been created purely as a plot device to perpetuate sequels in the theaters or an ongoing series on streaming services should this film perform well at the Box Office.
    On he bright side, the film is teeming with that vintage Spielberg/Amblin Entertainment mid-’80s vibe (think ET, Goonies, Gremlins), but with a slightly darker patina. It also seems to be trying to capitalize on the whole Stranger Things bandwagon.
    Apart from the dark ambiance, there are few scares and some interesting creature design. However, there are quite a few editing gaffs that make several scenes feel out of timeline and the ending of the film not only feels rushed, but is quietly confusing. As for the intelligence and ingenuity of the main characters? Given their precocious nature it’s seriously lacking. Honestly, once the kids figured out what was happening with the book of scary stories, they should have been quicker on the uptake to end the madness (“The Toe” story has a HUGE plot gap and an idiot protagonist, not to mention his helpless/clueless friends).
    There are also quite a few really bad special effect moments, particularly the speedy bugs that crawl all over a scarecrow’s face in the first segment. I am sure that somebody thought lots of CG created roly-polies running up and down a scarecrow’s face was scary, but they were misguided.
    The film is something of a letdown considering the creative team involved. Overall this is pretty tame horror fare, especially given the Guillermo del Toro stamp of approval. If you are an older horror connoisseur, then this endeavor will be rather boring, but I imagine if you are a tween in Junior High, then this might very well be your jam.
    "Man, we killin' elephants in the back yard..."

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  11. #861
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    READY OR NOT
    2/5
    The inherent problem with Ready Or Not is that the geniuses in marketing at Fox Searchlight decided to include all the funny, shocking, and exciting moments of the film in the trailer. As if that weren’t enough, somebody else decided that it would be equally prudent to reveal the entire plot of the movie in the trailers, too. So, be warned that should you decide to venture to the cineplex to see this little horror-thriller-comedy and if you happened to have seen any of the trailers over the past few months, then there will be absolutely zero moments of hilarity, shock, or excitment in store for you. Additionally, the screenwriters felt it necessary to keep things utterly predictable. For example, the character searching for redemption finds it; the “innocent” character ends up being evil; the surprise ending isn’t. The cast is solid, for what it’s worth, and seems to be having a good time with the lackluster material. Samara Weaving (she, the niece of The Matrix's “Mr. Smith”) is fastly becoming this generation’s bona fide genre queen, having starred in the delectable The Babysitter (on NF) and the lackluster Mayhem prior to giving a go at being the blood-spattered bride in this eventual dud. Her charisma and spunk is really the only thing keeping this venture afloat. On the subject of acting, I have to say that I found I rather liked Adam Brody in the picture (even though his character archetype was completely cliche) and hope that he finds himself in bigger and better fare. Other than Weaving and Brody, the real star of the film is the opulent mansion in which our story takes place (I Googled it and apparently it’s widely used in film, television, and the like). Ultimately, this film should have gone straight to Red Box or a streaming site like Netflix and not the theaters (whereas The Babysitter should have gotten a theatrical release, imho).
    "Man, we killin' elephants in the back yard..."

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