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Topic: Movies that get better after multiple viewings. The Watchmen Post ReplyPost New Topic
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Andrew Cate
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Posted: 25 March 2019 at 1:41pm | IP Logged | 1 post reply

The Watchmen has been on cable pretty much non stop lately. Can't help myself to get sucked in every time it comes on. Remember walking out of the theatre thinking it was a decent to solid movie, now I have to say it's up there in my top 5.....just kept getting better the more I watched it. Probably have watched it 10 times now, outside of JAWS I never do that. 
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John Byrne
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Posted: 25 March 2019 at 1:59pm | IP Logged | 2 post reply

WATCHMEN had the opposite effect—and it didn’t start too high for me to begin with.

Movies that have “grown” on me after a shaky start include CARS, WRECK-IT RALPH and THE TEMPEST (Helen Mirren).

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Andrew Cate
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Posted: 25 March 2019 at 2:13pm | IP Logged | 3 post reply

When you have 4 kids under the age of 12 you try to avoid Cars and Wreck It Ralph whenever possible. I associate those movies with a smelly minivan traveling cross country to visit in-laws.

Inglourious Basterds is my new Shawshank. If it's on I have to watch it. 


Edited by Andrew Cate on 25 March 2019 at 2:14pm
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Jim Muir
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Posted: 25 March 2019 at 2:54pm | IP Logged | 4 post reply

Watchmen is an odd one. I can watch any scenes in isolation and really appreciate their accuracy to the comicbook... it’s just as a whole movie it feels, meh.

Weirdly, I used to read the ‘graphic novel’ at least once a year. Since the movie came out I can’t bring myself to reread it.
I have no idea what that means!

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Shaun Barry
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Posted: 25 March 2019 at 3:47pm | IP Logged | 5 post reply


(WATCHMEN, to me, is one of the most pretentious, self-important comic book films ever made.  I tried to watch it once... that's all I needed.)

In terms of "gets better with multiple viewings," I guess I'd throw in DANCES WITH WOLVES.  Really did not see the appeal of that one for years after its release; but a few years back, I sat down and finally watched it straight through from beginning to end, and was won-over.  Never thought I would have admitted it 20 or 25 years ago, but (though somewhat flawed in spots) it's really a beautiful film.



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Matt Hawes
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Posted: 25 March 2019 at 5:15pm | IP Logged | 6 post reply

THE BIG LEBOWSKI is one of those films for me. When I first saw it with some friends (who loved it), it didn't really do anything for me. I saw it again in a Chicago hotel room and kept it on as nothing else on TV that night interested me. I found myself getting into the film more than before. I now own it on Blu-Ray.

WATCHMEN, I like about as much as I had before, which is to say, "eh." I don't hate it, don't love it, but I can still watch it.


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Peter Martin
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Posted: 25 March 2019 at 5:30pm | IP Logged | 7 post reply

Silence of the Lambs is a film that I grew to like and admire on repeated (although occasional) viewings, after initially feeling a little ambivalent towards it.

Watchmen left me cold for some reason. Liked the comic; the film just didn't garner the emotional response, though being superficially faithful. It tasted like plastic. And I've therefore never gone back to watching it again.

I generally feel that repeated viewing inevitably diminish a film's impact; it just takes a lot longer for the really good films. I watched Jaws, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Back to the Future and RoboCop many, many times in the 80s and early 90s and used to get something out of it each time. However, they have lost a lot of their zest, just from familiarity. My head still knows they're excellent; but the punch is lacking unless I leave several years (even a decade) between viewings.
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Michael Roberts
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Posted: 25 March 2019 at 6:00pm | IP Logged | 8 post reply

CARS was one of the films that grew on me, after forced multiple viewings when my nephew was in his CARS phase.

Another film that I initially disliked, but grew to enjoy was OFFICE SPACE.
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Steven Myers
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Posted: 25 March 2019 at 6:58pm | IP Logged | 9 post reply

I didn't care for Dumb and Dumber at all when I first watched it. The overall plot is just very weak. However, individual scene viewed in isolation are rather funny! And you forget how it doesn't make sense. 

I'll add the first Harry Potter movie. It really isn't very good, especially when compared to later movies. It was done with a tighter budget and time frame, since they didn't know if the movies would be successful. However, I love the casting and looking back at all the actors as little kiddies is so much fun!


Edited by Steven Myers on 25 March 2019 at 7:01pm
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Christopher Frost
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Posted: 25 March 2019 at 7:47pm | IP Logged | 10 post reply

Watchmen suffered from the same problem the comic did which is the slow pacing. Yes, it's a deliberate choice to set the tone of the story and it does have some great moments but both are something of a chore to get through. If it tightened the pacing up a bit, it would flow more smoothly and keep things rolling. Instead it just kind of drifts along using mood to carry it forward.

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Adam Schulman
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Posted: 25 March 2019 at 8:09pm | IP Logged | 11 post reply

I can't watch anything directed by Zack Snyder. I think his work is very, very immature. A movie version of WATCHMEN was probably a bad idea anyway, but if it was to be done, he was very much the wrong person to direct.

(I don't know who the right person would've been. David Cronenberg? Darren Aronofsky? Jim Jarmusch? Someone NOT associated with Big Action Movies.)
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James Woodcock
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Posted: 25 March 2019 at 11:26pm | IP Logged | 12 post reply

Watchmen came out on my 40th birthday. I was apprehensive as I disliked Snyder’s overuse of slow motion.

The film, for the most part, was very accurate to the comic. But it was like watching people with no actual connection to the material. There was just no energy. Padestrian even.

& I walked out of the cinema wondering how something so faithful could be such a disappointment. 

I’ve watched it a couple of times since but still fail to be moved by it.

I can’t really think of a film I wasn’t impressed with that I grew to like. I can think of plenty where the opposite is true though.
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Tim O Neill
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Posted: 26 March 2019 at 9:11am | IP Logged | 13 post reply


Matt, I agree wholeheartedly about THE BIG LEBOWSKI - it gets funnier with each viewing.  There are so many little moments that get lost in some of the bigger, more memorable moments.  And I also didn’t quite know what to make of it when I saw it in the theater.  Certainly the humor improves with more viewings, but I think I also appreciated it more when I caught on that it was a classic noir structure, but with a stoner as the hero.  It’s such a great idea that plays out over and over again.


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John Byrne
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Posted: 26 March 2019 at 9:55am | IP Logged | 14 post reply

THE BIG LEBOWSKI was a big nothing, for me, and has remained so.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 26 March 2019 at 9:57am | IP Logged | 15 post reply

I’ll add THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL, which I loved from the first and which has somehow managed to get better and better.
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Ed Aycock
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Posted: 27 March 2019 at 9:27am | IP Logged | 16 post reply

ALICE DOESN'T LIVE HERE ANYMORE- I first saw this after a steady diet of the sitcom it spun off and was very surprised how different the tone, rawness and dark scenes the film has as compared to the sitcom.  I didn't watch it again for several years and each time, it gets better and better so that now I can barely watch the sitcom.  Same with M*A*S*H. 




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John Byrne
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Posted: 27 March 2019 at 10:19am | IP Logged | 17 post reply

M*A*S*H steadily turned more and more into "The Alan Alda Show", which took it further and further from its movie roots--which were themselves far removed from the novel.
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Rich Marzullo
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Posted: 27 March 2019 at 10:22am | IP Logged | 18 post reply

The Birdcage immediately springs to mind for me.
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Doug Jones
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Posted: 27 March 2019 at 12:10pm | IP Logged | 19 post reply

DOUBLE INDEMNITY is a film that I enjoy more and more every time I watch.
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Kevin Brown
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Posted: 27 March 2019 at 12:21pm | IP Logged | 20 post reply

M*A*S*H steadily turned more and more into "The Alan Alda Show", which took it further and further from its movie roots--which were themselves far removed from the novel.

******************************

M*A*S*H was 3 different shows:  

1st show, the Trapper John/Henry Blake episodes.  Funny as hell. A great 3 year run!

2nd show,  BJ BC (Before Charles) episodes.  Still some funny stuff, but a lot more drama. Still quite good in spots, but mostly medicore.

3rd show:  Charles arrives:  Almost all drama with a sprinkling of comedy.  M*A*S*H in name only.


(Sorry for the derail)


Edited by Kevin Brown on 27 March 2019 at 12:22pm
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Brian Rhodes
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Posted: 27 March 2019 at 7:56pm | IP Logged | 21 post reply

Disagree. M*A*S*H was two shows; Henry/Trapper and after-Henry/Trapper.

They tried to make it seem like the departures were separate, but they weren't  

That Frank Burns and Radar hung on for a bit is immaterial. The show had already fundamentally shifted.
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Brian Rhodes
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Posted: 27 March 2019 at 8:07pm | IP Logged | 22 post reply

I never read the Watchmen series, so I had no reference point for the movie, which I guess was...entertaining. Maybe I need repeat viewings, as once has seemed to be sufficient, to this point.

The phenomenon of movies getting better with repeat viewings seems to apply with comedies, to me.

ANCHORMAN: THE LEGEND OF RON BURGUNDY, I found mildly amusing, at first, but it definitely got  better with repeat viewings. Not sure why. Same for MONTY PYTHON AND THE HOLY GRAIL. 
Perhaps the appreciation of absurdity grows exponentially with additional showings.


Edited by Brian Rhodes on 28 March 2019 at 10:07am
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Brian Hague
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Posted: 27 March 2019 at 9:13pm | IP Logged | 23 post reply

Two films that I revisit often are Sebastian Gutierrez's WOMEN IN TROUBLE and Shawn Pillar and Scott Lew's SEXY EVIL GENIUS. I don't know that they necessary get better with each viewing, but I do enjoy them every time.

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Brian Hague
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Posted: 27 March 2019 at 9:31pm | IP Logged | 24 post reply

Re: WATCHMEN, I was such a fan of the original series as it was coming out that little things about the film bother me and continue to do so whenever I come back to it. 

I very much enjoy that opening sequence, which fills in so much of the background information Moore included in his text pieces, and the general approach to Rorschach and Dr. Manhattan.

However, Malin Akerman's take on the Silk Spectre is completely wrong. She is too young and plays her as some sort of hyped-up adrenaline junkie. Moore's Spectre was not particularly jazzed about "going out at three in the morning and doing something stupid." She was going to do it for Nite Owl's sake and for the general "fuck 'em" vibe of it, but Akerman's "golly gee whillikers" zowie-ness over the idea is just wrong. Also, she should smoke. There are a couple of key moments that depend on that. 

Jeffrey Dean Morgan's Comedian is again too young and not nearly G. Gordon Liddy enough. Matthew Goode's Ozymandias may as well be wearing a twirlable mustache and demanding the rent. While I'm far more on board with the Leonard Cohen "Hallelujah" scene than others are, we know what song is supposed to be playing there, and it's Billie Holiday's "You're My Thrill." There's much to admire and enjoy in that film, but the flaws do not diminish for me with repeated viewings.

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Shaun Barry
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Posted: 28 March 2019 at 2:40pm | IP Logged | 25 post reply


I'll add another comicbook film:

THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 2 (2014)

It's overlong, it's tonally all over the place, and the 3 main villains (Electro, the Green Goblin, and the Rhino) are all friggin' terrible... but, I just enjoy this more than THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN [Part 1] from two years prior.

This one's brighter, it's got more action (though spread over 2 hours and 20 min.!), it's funnier, the score is more memorable, and what I keep coming back to are the performances of Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone.  And the ending scene is especially poignant... whether or not you agree with this interpretation of "The Night Gwen Stacy Died," what ends-up on screen is still quite the heart-tugger.



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