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Topic: What disc did you have in last (and what did you think)? Post ReplyPost New Topic
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William Griffin
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Joined: 15 August 2012
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 156
Posted: 03 March 2014 at 2:15pm | IP Logged | 1 post reply

I never watch broadcast films any more - I don't even have a TV licence. I can't remember the last time I saw a cropped movie.
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Peter Martin
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Posted: 03 March 2014 at 8:28pm | IP Logged | 2 post reply

The Thing (2011).

Trying to judge the film on its own merits, it's well-made, has moments of tension, some pretty gruesome special effects and Mary Elizabeth Winstead makes an appealing heroine.

The downsides come in comparison to Carpenter's 1982 film. The creeping paranoia is less well-realised; the characters are for the most part bland ciphers in comparison to the interesting ensemble from its forerunner; the special effects, while good, are no better than Rob Bottin's despite an intervening 29 years (perhaps this was intentional though); and ultimately it's too much of a retread of what's gone before, a remake by stealth. The need to tie up the ending to the beginning of Carpenter's film is down with no elegance. It does raise the question of why bother when it was always going to be inferior to Carpenter's film.

So pretty good, but kind of pointless.
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Shaun Barry
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Posted: 03 March 2014 at 9:14pm | IP Logged | 3 post reply


THE UNINVITED (1944)

Second time trying with this one (first time was some 10-odd years ago)...

I suppose I understand why it has its fans, but I just can't get into it. Exquisite black & white photography; great 1940s character actors (including Ray Milland, Ruth Hussey, Alan Napier and Donald Crisp); plus, for 1944, some rather superb and subtle visual effects... but I find that, in terms of supernatural ghost/horror films, it's still badly dated. Could be the most polite & mannered haunted house movie ever made.

Really only slightly, mildly eerie. Not bad necessarily, but it just didn't move me. Or scare me.

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Richard White
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Joined: 28 August 2009
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Posted: 04 March 2014 at 1:22am | IP Logged | 4 post reply

I really ended up enjoying THE UNINVITED but I have to
say it was a lot lighter than I expected.The aspect ratio
discussion takes me back to the early days of DVD and
trying to explain to my Dad that he wasn't missing any of
the picture but seeing it all!

Edited by Richard White on 04 March 2014 at 5:32am
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Richard White
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Posted: 04 March 2014 at 5:37am | IP Logged | 5 post reply

WINGS (1927) - The ariel and ground battles were
amazing, had a fantastic time watching this film.

Watching these era films, restored and on Blu-ray, is
pretty exciting in itself. Where once films of this age
often looked faded to the point of being otherworldly,
they now present a vivid and living portrait of a time and
people largely long gone.
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Jason Mark Hickok
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Posted: 04 March 2014 at 8:19am | IP Logged | 6 post reply

I am not sure I've ever hear Ray Milland described as a character actor.
He really was a leading man who did so in some fantastic films.
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Roy Johnson
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Posted: 04 March 2014 at 9:11am | IP Logged | 7 post reply

Sorry if I belabor the aspect ratio topic, but I do recall seeing this:

The Monty Python documentary, "Almost the Truth (Lawyer's Cut)" broadcast on Bravo. It is a widescreen film (likely 16:9), that I was watching on a 16:9 HDTV, but it was broadcast "pillared" which is black bars on either side so that it fits in a 4:3. It would, of course, have clips from the old show. 

So you would get this:
a 4:3 clip, shown "letterboxed" inside a widescreen film, that was pillared on either side.

(This was before I discovered that my cable box could stretch a 4:3 to properly fill a 16:9 screen)

Sort of like this:


Edited by Roy Johnson on 04 March 2014 at 10:43am
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William Griffin
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Posted: 04 March 2014 at 12:14pm | IP Logged | 8 post reply

THE TEXAS CHAIN SAW MASSACRE: I first saw this when it was re-released at the cinema after having been banned for many years in the UK, so maybe 15 years or so ago. It was shocking and intense, not because of the gore (it's pretty light on that) but because of the bizarre production design, the heavy atmosphere, the terror of the characters and the relentless disgustingness of the whole thing.

The time round... pretty tedious stuff. Maybe the intensity has gone because the shock of the new has worn off, maybe it's because post-Saw, post-Hostel, it all seems a bit tame. Leatherface and his bone-and-skin approach to interior design are still creepy, but without the driving sense of horror the pace is a crawl and as much of the movie is basically a helpless woman screaming in terror, which is, you know, unpleasant, this is a movie I can do without. 
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William Griffin
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Posted: 04 March 2014 at 4:08pm | IP Logged | 9 post reply

TEXAS CHAINSAW: The recent direct sequel to the original that (I think) ignores all the other sequels and remakes. It's bland, it's largely ineffective (although there are one or two tense moments) and Alexandra Daddario is, despite her jiggly bits, absolutely terrible. Weirdly, despite this pointedly taking place almost 40 years after the events of the first film everyone's about 20 years younger than they should be. Poorly written, directed without style, full of typical slasher characters doing idiotic things and entirely without a point.
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Benny Hasa
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Posted: 05 March 2014 at 11:21am | IP Logged | 10 post reply

Watched 12 YEARS A SLAVE last night. Very well acted film with a plethora of actors. Not a weak link within such a large cast.

Also watched OLDBOY (2013). I can see a lot of people not liking this film for various reasons, but I enjoyed it. Really enjoyed Sharlto Copley in this.

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William Griffin
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Posted: 05 March 2014 at 11:31am | IP Logged | 11 post reply

CUBE: This hasn't held up too well. The concept remains a great one and the design and look of the movie are real accomplishments considering the low budget, but the dialogue and acting are brutal at times and there are too many weird, distracting details like the plastic button that can scratch metal. 

PHONE BOOTH: My one reservation with this is that I wish someone other than Joel Schumacher has made it.  It really needed a more precise filmmaker, or someone who could give it a trashy 70s vibe. Instead we get tacky choices like the pointless and disorganised intro, and the strange stylistic effects that look like old Joel has just discovered the effects console I had in my college editing suite.

Having said that, the back and forth between Colin Farrell and Kiefer Sutherland is riveting, and Farrell's performance is terrific. It could have been a great little film, but instead it's merely very good. It's certainly the best thing Schumacher's ever done. 
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Peter Martin
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Posted: 05 March 2014 at 4:13pm | IP Logged | 12 post reply

Ip Man. Deserves plaudits for trying to up the quality factor in a chop socky movie. High production values, nice quietly graceful central performance from Donnie Yen and I liked how the less heroic characters have more than one facet, for the most part.

The final blurb, where the film declares China won the war in 1945, does suddenly tar the whole film with the brush of propaganda though. 
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