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  1. #1
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    What's Good At The Box? The Redbox Recommendation Thread

    Yeah, some of us still rock DVD players and hit up the Redbox kiosk down at the local market.
    Figured we could use a thread for recommendations (and what NOT to rent).


    First up:

    MANDY
    3.5 / 5

    While it can be a bit long-in-the-tooth at times, Pano Cosmatos' sophomore feature film is never less than visually stunning. His use of color is ripped straight out of the Italian genre master’s handbook (serious nods to both Bava and Argento) as well as his use of intrinsic and bombastic heavy metal cum prog rock influenced music.
    On the surface this is a rather simple revenge film, yet it is teeming with surreal and fantastical elements. In fact, for me, it really felt like Cosmatos was channelling John Milius’ classic minimalist sword/sorcery epic Conan the Barbarian, both in terms of its story and old school medieval violence. I mean there’s demons, a charismatic cult leader and his mindless and obedient servents, there’s pagen rituals, and heavy metal (literally) sword fighting (albeit in this case, it’s an axes and chainsaws).
    Those looking for deeper meaning in such films may easily construe that underneath all the grue and mayhem one can find condemnation of religion and the violence that has surrounded it for years; how people take those beliefs and twist them to their own purposes all in the name of a higher being. But if that kind of philosophical slant ain’t your cup of tea, no worries. The film is chock full of some of the good ol’ ultra-violence, not to mention some gonzo humor.
    And Nic Cage? Sure, he’s made a latter day career out of doing over-the-top characters and B-movie schlock (think Mom and Dad), but here he takes the cake, intricately ices it, and then eats it, too. When he’s not chain smoking and chopping wood, then he’s either spooning with his lady (the titular Mandy) or covered in blood and killing deranged biker demons and engaging in blood-soaked frenzies of violence. And his hair, which has long been the source of Internet scrutiny, has never looked better than in this film. His adversary, played to the hilt by Linus Roache, is a nefarious blend of weasely androgenous petulence, a narcissistic slimeball who teeters on the brink of empyrical sacrosancticity; he is creepy and sniveling and always malevolent.
    Throughout the film there are obvious visual nods to The Road Warrior and the Evil Dead trilogy-by-way-of-Texas Chainsaw Massacre, as well as the aforementioned stalwarts of Italian horror cinema, and a heavy debt to the psychotropic/psychotronic/avante garde films of the ‘60s and early ‘70s, but in the end the film is pure Cosmatos. It’s a deja vu laced pastiche of all the best parts from myriad core genre films, but most importantly it’s done as a loving homage to those influences and is rendered in a manner that also manages to come off feeling and looking fresh and vibrant. If there is any washback, I would say it comes in the slow set-up; the first act is a bit too introspective for my taste and easily could have been edited down a bit. But that’s just me, impatient as fuck to get to the insane action and nuttso violence.


    RIYL
    Baskin; Beyond The Black Rainbow; The Neon Demon; Only God Forgives; Susperia; the films of Alejandro Jodorowsky; Conan the Barbarian (the Arnie one)
    "Man, we killin' elephants in the back yard..."

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  2. #2
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    Recommend against Venom. It sucked as a superhero movie, or horror, or comedy. Not sure what they were going for, but they achieved suckage.
    Quote Originally Posted by powder11 View Post
    if you have to resort to taking advice from the nitwits on this forum, then you're doomed.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by El Chupacabra View Post
    Recommend against Venom. It sucked as a superhero movie, or horror, or comedy. Not sure what they were going for, but they achieved suckage.
    One of the worst films I saw in 2018. A complete and utter turd.

    The only other action film that might be worse than Venom is The Predator (DO NOT waste your $1.75 and taxes).
    "Man, we killin' elephants in the back yard..."

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  4. #4
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    Mission: Impossible – Fallout. To me, it is one of the best MI films.

  5. #5
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    ASSASSINATION NATION
    3.5 / 5


    Critics are really divided on this film.
    On the surface, I loved it. It pretty much borrows bits and pieces from every conceiveable genre film imaginable, ranging from Japanese girl gangs to home invasion to Italian horror/giallo (mostly borrowing Mario Bava and Dario Argento's flair for saturated color drenched cinematography). It's smart, dumb, funny, teeming with shock and awe violence, cool meta moments, and snarky, attention deficit disorder-styled mayhem. It's exploitive and brash, and while there is obvious (and rather blunt) socio/political commentary, it can also succumb to mundanity in a flash. It's a John Hughes-styled teen flick on crystal meth and psychedelics.

    I am planning to see it a second time...

    RIYL
    Heathers; The Purge series; A Clockwork Orange; Kill Bill (either volume); vintage Brian DePalma; vintage Dario Argento
    "Man, we killin' elephants in the back yard..."

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  6. #6
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    ANT-MAN & THE WASP
    3.5 / 5

    It's fun. It's fast-paced. It's goofy. It's exciting. It's what you would call a proverbial "popcorn movie" or "summer movie".
    I'd liken it to Fantastic Voyage-crossed with-Dr. Shrinker-crossed with-Honey I Shrunk The Kids, but coated liberally in steroids and Vitamin L, tossed in the oven and baked until super gooey and aromatic.
    The action sequences are insane. The nods to pop culture (Hot Wheels, carry-on-luggage, Bullitt, just to name a few) are great. The pacing is whip-quick.
    My only quibbles are in regards to a couple of flashback sequences that imploy copious CGI to render younger versions of Michael Douglas, Michelle Pfeiffer, and Lawrence Fishburne. I absolutely loathe this new technology. I am guessing that it's cheaper than hiring an actor to portray the younger versions but no matter how much they have perfected this effect, I still find it distracting.
    As I alluded to earlier, the characters, goofy dialogue, fun spirit, and zany action elements ultimately reminded me of vintage live-action Disney films of the '60s and early '70s that I grew up on (think The Love Bug, Strongest Man In The World, Absent Minded Professor, etc). As goofy as it may sound, that kind of zany, yet wholesome comedic element is generally missing from cinema these days. It's actually kind of cool in my book.
    In short, this is an exhilerating romp. Sure, it won't terribly tax your brain, but more importantly it won't leave you feeling like you've been duped.
    "Man, we killin' elephants in the back yard..."

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  7. #7
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    THE OLD MAN AND THE GUN
    This film is immensely likeable. Essentially a modern day western, it unfolds with a casual, rather languid manner which turns it into what can only be described as a laid-back "action" film.
    It succeeds largely in part due to natural pacing and the easy-going demeanor of all the actors involved; this is a cast that is clearly having fun with the material, but not at the expense of the story.
    The droll humor of the screenplay ripples nicely throughout and the snappy the dialogue and intriguing story keep things light on the surface, but also allows for subtle, deeper layers to quietly resonate. The end result is so much more than just another revisionist western.
    Robert Redford, in the titular role, is sublime and his budding romance with Sisst Spacek showcases two Old School pros having a blast. The supporting cast is equally solid. Danny Glover, in his usual curmudgeonly cautious self proves that he was expertly typecast here. Then there’s Casey Affleck, who gives a wonderfully understated performance as an ennui-infused police detective. The scene stealer, however, is Tom Waits, who probably only garners 10-minutes of total screen time, but mesmerizes the audience every time he pops up.
    Additionally, the “antiquated” look of the film creates a semi-dream-like, almost surreal atmosphere, as if we are watching a modern day fairy tale.
    Highly recommended.
    "Man, we killin' elephants in the back yard..."

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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by dookey67 View Post
    THE OLD MAN AND THE GUN
    This film is immensely likeable. Essentially a modern day western, it unfolds with a casual, rather languid manner which turns it into what can only be described as a laid-back "action" film.
    It succeeds largely in part due to natural pacing and the easy-going demeanor of all the actors involved; this is a cast that is clearly having fun with the material, but not at the expense of the story.
    The droll humor of the screenplay ripples nicely throughout and the snappy the dialogue and intriguing story keep things light on the surface, but also allows for subtle, deeper layers to quietly resonate. The end result is so much more than just another revisionist western.
    Robert Redford, in the titular role, is sublime and his budding romance with Sisst Spacek showcases two Old School pros having a blast. The supporting cast is equally solid. Danny Glover, in his usual curmudgeonly cautious self proves that he was expertly typecast here. Then there’s Casey Affleck, who gives a wonderfully understated performance as an ennui-infused police detective. The scene stealer, however, is Tom Waits, who probably only garners 10-minutes of total screen time, but mesmerizes the audience every time he pops up.
    Additionally, the “antiquated” look of the film creates a semi-dream-like, almost surreal atmosphere, as if we are watching a modern day fairy tale.
    Highly recommended.
    I had to jump through a few Hoops to actually get this rented. I knew it would be worth it. Redbox is really good about throwing you free movie codes when things don't go right. I would probably buy this movie on Blu-ray for five bucks

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  9. #9
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    Finally watched mid 90s movie before the Super Bowl. Low budget but great if you grew up skateboarding

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    Bacon tastes good. Pork chops taste goood.

  10. #10
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    I keep hearing good things about SEARCHING...
    "Man, we killin' elephants in the back yard..."

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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by willywhit View Post
    First Man in the dvd player

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    great flick, on many levels. you could even watch it with a chick for the drama. Gonna get it on blu ray next time for the big tv. the pc monitor didn't do it justice. watched it just before trump came on...perspective

    Bacon tastes good. Pork chops taste goood.

  12. #12
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    2fer with joaquin. first, score, He won't get far. red box says, get another and it's a buck off. well, first one was free, why not. didn't know it was another joaoqueen but on impulse, rotten tomatoes gave it a good score. both were great


    I kept waiting for will ferrel to do a cameo
    Bacon tastes good. Pork chops taste goood.

  13. #13
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    Great thread idea Dookie, but Im pretty disappointed you didn't title it WHAT's In The BOX?!?!?! Come on man!
    That was a gimme!

  14. #14
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    red box ce soir

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  15. #15
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    Not sure how many of these are in a RedBox, but some current-ish rentals we've watched lately:

    American Animals - 3.5 / 5 - Based on a true story. Cleverly put together, mixing actors and the real people who were involved in the crime. Overall entertaining, but the story drags a bit at times.

    You Were Never Really Here - 4 / 5 - Joaquin Phoenix is solid. The whole thing is pretty tense, and it maintains a level of discomfort throughout. Which, given the subject matter, is appropriate. The plot is a little farfetched, but it almost doesn't really matter.

    Mid90's - 3 / 5 - Kind of like a lighter version of "Kids." Although not that light. Entertaining enough, especially if you were into the skateboard scene.

    Bad Times at the El Royale - 4 / 5 - Enough twists and turns to keep you guessing. Nothing that hasn't been done before, but it's a well executed re-hash that's worth watching. I liked the soundtrack too.

    Blindspotting - 3.5 / 5 - Pretty straightforward story, reasonably well acted. Socially relevant, but I'm not sure it really has anything to say that's all that provocative or different.

    Mission Impossible Fallout - 2.5 / 5 - Kind of a weak entry in the MI series. I'd call it the second worst one - better than #2 though. Tom's getting old, the story was forced, and while the action was solid (of course), there weren't any moments that jumped out at me as being especially cool. It's tough to bring something new and awesome in the action genre these days.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by toast2266 View Post
    Not sure how many of these are in a RedBox, but some current-ish rentals we've watched lately:

    American Animals - 3.5 / 5 - Based on a true story. Cleverly put together, mixing actors and the real people who were involved in the crime. Overall entertaining, but the story drags a bit at times.

    You Were Never Really Here - 4 / 5 - Joaquin Phoenix is solid. The whole thing is pretty tense, and it maintains a level of discomfort throughout. Which, given the subject matter, is appropriate. The plot is a little farfetched, but it almost doesn't really matter.

    Mid90's - 3 / 5 - Kind of like a lighter version of "Kids." Although not that light. Entertaining enough, especially if you were into the skateboard scene.

    Bad Times at the El Royale - 4 / 5 - Enough twists and turns to keep you guessing. Nothing that hasn't been done before, but it's a well executed re-hash that's worth watching. I liked the soundtrack too.

    Blindspotting - 3.5 / 5 - Pretty straightforward story, reasonably well acted. Socially relevant, but I'm not sure it really has anything to say that's all that provocative or different.

    Mission Impossible Fallout - 2.5 / 5 - Kind of a weak entry in the MI series. I'd call it the second worst one - better than #2 though. Tom's getting old, the story was forced, and while the action was solid (of course), there weren't any moments that jumped out at me as being especially cool. It's tough to bring something new and awesome in the action genre these days.
    Spot on Toast.
    I have seen BD@tER at Redbox, as well as Blindspotting.
    I know that YWNRH is on Amazon Prime right now.
    American Animals was a sleeper. I love me some heist films and this one was really cool and somewhat different (and the fact that it's based on a real event was even cooler). I think I saw that at RB, too.
    Have not seen Mid '90s (and I was not a skater...unless you consider owning a Banana Board being a skater!)
    And totally agree about MI:FO. I thought it was bloated. I really, really dug the previous installment (MI: Rogue Nation), which I thought, to date, is the pinnacle of the series. That film was great from start to finish, imho.
    "Man, we killin' elephants in the back yard..."

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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by dookey67 View Post
    And totally agree about MI:FO. I thought it was bloated. I really, really dug the previous installment (MI: Rogue Nation), which I thought, to date, is the pinnacle of the series. That film was great from start to finish, imho.
    Yeah, I really liked Rogue Nation. Overcoming the hurdles seemed more... impossible. I still like the first MI (well, the first Cruise one) a lot. Tough call between that and Rogue Nation for my favorite - they're quite different.

  18. #18
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    SUSPERIA (2018)
    3.5/5
    As a longtime fan of the original Dario Argento masterpiece, I was a bit skeptical of this new version, but I gotta say that it was much better than I expected and I was pleasantly surprised, to say the least.
    For starters, it's less of a remake than a re-imagining as the director (Luca Guadagnino, who is primarily known for deep dramas and romantic films, which immediately makes any true blue horror fan shake their head) takes the basic story from the original and not only tweaks it, but expands on it to include some of Argento's other mythology (The Three Mothers, to be exact). He also eschews Argento's lush, ultra-bright colors in favor of a darker, slightly more drab feel that gives the film a much more gothic and creepy feel.
    Granted, the new film has a few problems, most notably the sappy Thom Yorke score (the film would have benefitted from hiring Jonny Greenwood instead, imho, as the abrasive and intense score he did for You Were Never Really Here was pretty fantastic and his style would have fit the horrific undertones of the film more), but overall it's solid.
    I kinda recommend watching the original and then seeing this if you are a gung-ho horror nerd.

    RIYL
    Rosemary’s Baby; The Sentinel; The Lords of Salem
    "Man, we killin' elephants in the back yard..."

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  19. #19
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    The Queen Movie and the Lady Gaga movie were great but I think I need to buy this on blu ray
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  20. #20
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    First man - 3.5 / 5 - very Ryan Gosling-ish. Sparse dialog, and plenty of semi abstract kinda artsy shots. Different subject matter, but feels similar to a number of other Gosling movies. Slow pacing with some pretty intense scenes. I liked it, but I can see how plenty of people wouldn't.

    Widows - 2.5 / 5 - seems like it tried to be too many things at once. There were a bunch of threads, any of which could have been fleshed out into a solid story, but none of them really were. The end result was reasonably entertaining at a superficial level, but it felt a bit underdeveloped, and didn't really hit home because of that.

  21. #21
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    looks like it's up for awards. gloomy sunday flick, perfect

    https://variety.com/2018/film/spotli...gh-1202927198/
    Bacon tastes good. Pork chops taste goood.

  22. #22
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    CREED II
    3.5 / 5
    Despite basically being a modern day rehash of Rocky IV, Creed II is surprisingly entertaining.
    There are quite a few "real" moments that resonated with me (some of Stallone's dialogue is great), the fight sequences are jarring, and the acting is solid (with the exception of Phylicia Rashad, who seems to have only one facial expression: sardonic mom).
    Sly comes off sagely, Tessa Thompson continues to eek her way to the top of my "cinema crushes" list, and Michael B. Jordon is passionate. And how can you lose with Drago and Drago, Jr.?
    Needless to say, while it is teeming with cliches and follows a very specific (and some could claim, tired) formula, I was pleasantly surprised and thoroughly entertained.
    "Man, we killin' elephants in the back yard..."

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  23. #23
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    We watched The Favourite last night.

    Short review: skip.

    Longer: the movie went from incomprehensible, to dull, to confusing, to weird and mediocre. The cinematography was annoying: low, fisheyed shots, only natural lighting (including indoors)...

    Recommend if you like boring, weird, semi historical drama. Otherwise, I enjoyed The Meg more than this thing.
    Quote Originally Posted by powder11 View Post
    if you have to resort to taking advice from the nitwits on this forum, then you're doomed.

  24. #24
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    Mandy: 2.5 / 5. Conflicted on whether I liked it or hated it. Wife is not at all conflicted (hated it). It's like the Do Lung Bridge scene in Apocalypse Now, but for 2 hours. Intense, and then tiring, and then intense again. And colorful. It also epitomizes 2019 era Nick Cage.

    Bohemian Rhapsody: 3.5 / 5. It's been pretty well covered in here, and I generally agree with previous sentiments. But just to reiterate; jesus christ, those fucking teeth.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by El Chupacabra View Post
    We watched The Favourite last night.

    Short review: skip.

    Longer: the movie went from incomprehensible, to dull, to confusing, to weird and mediocre. The cinematography was annoying: low, fisheyed shots, only natural lighting (including indoors)...

    Recommend if you like boring, weird, semi historical drama. Otherwise, I enjoyed The Meg more than this thing.
    I loved the film for all the reasons you didn't.

    The fish-eye shots were meant to convey the completly out-of-touch-with-the-common-man insulated nature of high society.
    I thought the cinematography was rich and lush in texture.
    And yes, the film was weird, but that's the director and screenwriter's forte (it would help if you were familiar with their previous films, The Lobster and The Killing of a Sacred Deer).
    I thought it was anything but boring or dull.
    The costumes were great.
    The absurdist touches were cool, from the twerking ballroom dance to the caged rabbits and the gratuitious use of the word "cunt" ("cunt-struck" was perhaps one of the greatest phrases I've ever heard).
    It reminded me of Richard Lester's over-the-top, randy, and risque Three Musketeers movies of the '70s, Barry Lyndon, and Ridley Scott's The Duelists, and A Knight's Tale.

    Here's the quick review I posted on the Current Movies In Theaters Thread:

    THE FAVOURITE
    4/5
    This film is deliciously wicked (at least the first 2 acts). The acting is superb (Olivia Coleman straight kills it as Queen Anne and Rachel Weisz is all smoldering cattiness. Oh yeah, Nicholas Hoult plays foppishness to the hilt).
    The opulent sets are amazing and totally make the film worth seeing in theaters.
    And extra points for the term "cunt-struck."
    Between the snarky dialogue and flamboyant tapestry there are some genuinely absurdist moments (the Queen's ball with crazy twerking dance moves, for one).
    The third act gets a bit sober and the ending is downright dour (which keeps in tune with the director's previous films: The Lobster and Killing of a Sacred Deer).

    RIYL
    A Knight's Tale; The Three Muskateers (the 1973 Richard Lester-directed film); The Four Muskateers (the 1974 sequel); Dangerous Liasons; Barry Lyndon
    "Man, we killin' elephants in the back yard..."

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