Last Seen Movie - The Latest Movie You Have Seen; ratings

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Re: Last Seen Movie - The Latest Movie You Have Seen; ratings

Postby Reza » Sun Apr 29, 2018 1:52 pm

Good Sam (Leo McCarey, 1948) 6/10

McCarey is here in Frank Capra mode. Cooper is the do-gooder who goes beyond the call of duty in his neighborhood much to the consternation of his hapless family. He just doesn't know when to stop with his good deeds. Brittle Ann Sheridan, as his sensible wife, is superb and the two stars play well off each other. Cooper's usual slow-burn style of acting, which is usually always pretty annoying, works well for the character here. There are vivid bits scattered throughout as he interacts with a great supporting cast of character actors.

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Re: Last Seen Movie - The Latest Movie You Have Seen; ratings

Postby Reza » Sun Apr 29, 2018 1:51 pm

Bad Words (Jason Bateman, 2013) 7/10

Jason Bateman is so much better than the material he directed in which he also plays the leading role. The thrill for him must have been to play against type - here he is an unrepentant 40-year old asshole who is angry at everyone around him, a far cry from the usual mild mannered losers he is wont to play in films. Using a loophole in the rule book he competes with kids in a National spelling bee contest where he has absolutely no qualms about berating and undermining his fellow competitors all of whom are pre-teen kids. He is similarly obnoxious towards a reporter covering his story and who also happens to be his fuck-buddy. The F-bomb is in continuous motion throughout the screenplay and eventually wears thin - there are so many laughs you can milk by using that word. This is an extremely foul-mouthed and mean-spirited comedy (with quite a few laughs along the way) with rude ethnic zingers about Indian and Chinese kids. The movie comes to life in the scenes between Bateman and a precocious but lonely and neglected 9-year old Indian-American kid who is desperate to befriend him - the montage of them going for a whirl around town in a fast car, visiting bars and hookers is quite far-fetched but is in line with most current American smut comedies so in vogue today. Their relationship holds the key to the angry man's past and the film's end, which in it's predictability, is a bit of a cop-out. The screenplay should have ended on as much of a savage note as the rest of the verbal duels. Bateman is very good and the young child actor (Rohan Chand) is very appealing. With all the misogynistic and racist jokes on display this film must have been a chore to sit through by many anal and self righteous people in the "land of plenty".

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Re: Last Seen Movie - The Latest Movie You Have Seen; ratings

Postby Precious Doll » Sat Apr 28, 2018 10:54 pm

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society (2018) Mike Newell 5/10
Good News: Newspaper Salesman, Dead Dogs and Other People from Vienna (1990) Ulrich Seidl 5/10

Repeat viewings

The Old Maid (1939) Edmund Goulding 7/10
House Calls (1978) Howard Zieff 6/10
Carol (2015) Todd Haynes 9/10
The Night of the Following Day (1969) Hubert Cornfield & Richard Boone 6/10
One, Two, Three (1961) Billy Wilder 6/10
One From the Heart (1981) Francis Ford Coppola 4/10
Call Me By Your Name (2017) Luca Guadagnino 9/10
The Naked City (1948) Jules Dassin 6/10
Sebastiane (1976) Paul Humfress & Derek Jarman 7/10
Anatomy of a Murder (1959) Otto Preminger 9/10
“Those Koreans. They’re so suspicious, you know, ever since Hiroshima.” Constance Langdon (Jessica Lange) from American Horror Story: Season One

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Re: Last Seen Movie - The Latest Movie You Have Seen; ratings

Postby Reza » Tue Apr 24, 2018 1:50 am

The Great Man's Lady (William A. Wellman, 1942) 5/10

Rambling pioneer drama related to a reporter in flashback by an old lady at age 109 years. An uppercrust girl (Barbara Stanwyck) from Philadelphia gets married to an ambitious man (Joel McCrea) and they set out for California to find fame and fortune. Along the way to the top there is tragedy, floods and the death of their kids. Thinking she is dead he gets married and becomes a bigamist and rises up the political ladder while she has an affair with a gambler (Brian Donlevy). The film covers over 70 years of history in 90 minutes making the plot seem rushed and disjointed. Stanwyck has all the best scenes playing the spirited woman who sacrifices her marriage for her husband's new life with another family.

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Re: Last Seen Movie - The Latest Movie You Have Seen; ratings

Postby Reza » Tue Apr 24, 2018 1:49 am

The Death of Stalin (Armando Iannucci, 2017) 7/10

Very funny black comedy that lampoons Stalinist Russia. It's almost as if the Monty Python team have been resurrected. The Russian leader dies suddenly and his Inner Circle - Khrushchev (Steve Buscemi), Malenkov (Jeffrey Tambor), the sadistic secret police chief (Simon Russell Beale) among others - flail about in rambunctious fashion trying to plot against each other and seize power. The entire cast is superb - trading wicked barbs - playing bumbling and weak-minded buffoons. Political satire at its slapstick best.

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Re: Last Seen Movie - The Latest Movie You Have Seen; ratings

Postby Reza » Tue Apr 24, 2018 1:49 am

The Unfaithful (Vincent Sherman, 1947) 8/10

Gripping noir is a remake of W. Somerset Maugham's play, "The Letter", but this version goes off in other directions and has a different end to the first two versions which starred Jeanne Eagels in 1929 and Bette Davis in 1940. A socialite (Ann Sheridan) is attacked late at night in her home by an intruder and she stabs him to death in self defence. Distraught she tells the police the man was a stranger and is consoled by her husband (Zachary Scott) and close friend and lawyer (Lew Ayres). When later it emerges that she may have known the dead man she is put on trial for murder. The story is intact with ingredients of a first class noir - murder, lies, deception, blackmail and a femme fatale - only here the screenplay veers off into interesting tangents about life, love and marriage. The extremely underrated Ann Sheridan is superb as the conflicted woman who may or may not be hiding something and Eve Arden as a bitchy but concerned relative is hilarious. This version is not as great as the 1940 version by William Wyler but holds its own as a superb noir.

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Re: Last Seen Movie - The Latest Movie You Have Seen; ratings

Postby Reza » Tue Apr 24, 2018 1:48 am

Internes Can't Take Money (Alfred Santell, 1937) 7/10

Paramount here first brought Dr. Kildare to the screen followed by a series of films by MGM (with Lew Ayres) and much later the hit tv show (with Richard Chamberlain) during the 1960s. Joel McCrea plays the doctor - here an intern - in this "B" melodrama with a plot that centers on Barbara Stanwyck as an ex-con searching for her baby. For a low budget film this is memorably shot in expressionistic style by Theodor Sparkuhl who had honed his skills making german silents for Lubitsch. Tautly directed film with memorable art deco sets - the gleaming white clinic and hospital - sets the tone for a hard hitting melodrama involving several medical procedures, a down and out dame (Barbara Stanwyck) who is willing to steal and sleep with a crook to find her baby, a tough as nails hood (Lloyd Nolan as a precursor to Bogart) and his gang operating under Runyan-esque codes, who come to the rescue. McCrea and Stanwyck's strong screen chemistry holds this little gem of a film together and was the start of several screen teamings for both.

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Re: Last Seen Movie - The Latest Movie You Have Seen; ratings

Postby Reza » Tue Apr 24, 2018 1:48 am

Gaby (Curtis Bernhardt, 1956) 5/10

MGM dusts off it's old property (this is a remake of "Waterloo Bridge", based on the play by Robert E. Sherwood, and already filmed twice before in 1931 and 1940) for their new star - Leslie Caron. In London, during WWII, a french ballerina (Leslie Caron) meets and falls in love with an American G.I. (John Kerr). Due to red tape they cannot get married and he gets shipped off to the front and is later presumed dead. Devasted at the news she thinks her life is over and is reduced to prostitution finding solace in the arms of other soldiers. When he suddenly re-appears and discovers her past the turd hits the fan. Famous tearjerker this time comes to the screen in colour and cinemascope but doesn't hold a candle to the 1940 version. Caron is charming and her french background brings a different flavour to the part played so superbly by Vivien Leigh. John Kerr is too lightweight as a leading man unlike a star with the presence of Robert Taylor who made such a great teaming with Leigh. The material is pretty trite to begin with and save for watching the lovely Caron with her lilting voice and accent this is a pretty ordinary film which seems to have been put out to pasture as it is hardly ever revived.

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Re: Last Seen Movie - The Latest Movie You Have Seen; ratings

Postby Reza » Tue Apr 24, 2018 1:47 am

Enchanted April (Mike Newell, 1991) 6/10

Charming if rather inconsequential fluff with the Italian locations (Portofino) easily the standout. Four women - all strangers - decide to pool in and rent a castle in Italy and spend a month there in April. They are all in desperate need for change and want to get away from family, lovers, husbands and friends and just enjoy the quiet of the Italian coutryside. Rose (Miranda Richardson) is married to a womanizer (Jim Broadbent), Lottie (Josie Lawrence) is bored with her domineering husband (Alfred Molina), Lady Caroline (Polly Walker) is tired of the social scene in London and Mrs Fisher (Joan Plowright) is a lonely widow with an acid tongue. The women bond but complications arise when the two husbands arrive. Slow paced drama is exquisitely produced with a wonderful cast. The screenplay, Joan Plowright and the costumes were all nominated for Oscars.

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Re: Last Seen Movie - The Latest Movie You Have Seen; ratings

Postby Reza » Tue Apr 24, 2018 1:47 am

The Enchanted Cottage (John Cromwell, 1945) 9/10

Superb tearjerker and one of the classic romantic films has unfortunately been all but forgotten. A tale of two lost souls who learn to live and love while under the magical influence of a country cottage. A lonely and homely girl (Dorothy McGuire), working as a maid at the cottage of a widow (Mildred Natwick), meets a disfigured man (Robert Young) who has run away from the world to come live at the cottage. They find much in common in their drab existence and get married out of convenience. Gradually their love for each other makes them both come out of their shell and he sees a lovely vivacious woman in her while she sees in him a dashing and handsome man - a "spell" cast by the enchanted cottage. The couple are oblivious to their physical faults which others around them - the widow, a blind piano player (Herbert Marshall superbly understated) and the man's mother (Spring Byington - can clearly see. The film's outstanding production values - the sets, lighting by Ted Tetzlaff and the lushly romantic Oscar nominated score - help to create a dream-like mood suited to this uplifting romantic story. Young, McGuire, Natwick and Marshall all give outstanding performances. A film with a very strong message and not to be missed.

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Re: Last Seen Movie - The Latest Movie You Have Seen; ratings

Postby Reza » Tue Apr 24, 2018 1:46 am

They Dare Not Love (James Whale, 1941) 6/10

WWII propaganda film, with a strong anti-isolationist message for the United States, was James Whale's last film (made under conflict because either he was fired or he left because it was completed with the help of Victor Fleming and Charles Vidor). Rare forgotten film has Whale's polish very much in evidence. An Austrian aristocrat (George Brent) escapes to London when the country is taken over by the Nazis. Falling in love with an emigrée (Martha Scott) he realises that he has betrayed his people, who hold him in much esteem, and barters his life for the release of seven important Austrians in concentration camps and makes this pact with an aristocratic Nazi (Paul Lukas). The sea journey back is fraught with danger as he discovers he and his lover, who finds herself trapped on the boat, are prisoners and the Germans don't intend to keep their end of the bargain. There is nothing new in the story but the stars manage to hold the plot together. Brent phones in his usual nonchalant persona while Scott, fresh from her Oscar nominated performance for her debut the previous year in "Our Town", adds to the romance quotient. Peter Cushing, in an early bit, shines as a commanding captain of a British ship.

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Re: Last Seen Movie - The Latest Movie You Have Seen; ratings

Postby Reza » Tue Apr 24, 2018 1:46 am

Fargo - Season 2 (2015) 7/10

The irreverent black humour combined with brutal murders is always fun to watch but the plot this season - a hit-and-run by a hairdresser (a very annoying Kirstin Dunst) results in the eventual death of a young hood (Kieran Culkin) after her husband, a butcher (Jesse Plemons), stabs him in their garage after which he proceeds to chop up the body to get rid of it. The coked up hood had earlier shot dead three people at a diner just before getting run over. His crime family - headed by matriarch Jean Smart - is needless to say not amused. Investigating the spate of murders is a cop (Patrick Wilson) and his father-in-law, the sheriff (Ted Danson). The story, set in 1979 Minnesota, is brilliantly created via its production design and costumes. However, none of these characters are particularly interesting and the script is devoid of cruel malice until episode 6 when the series begins to kick ass and it becomes a virtual blood bath. The show, Dunst, Bokeem Woodbine (as an assassin), Plemons and Smart were all nominated for Emmys.

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Re: Last Seen Movie - The Latest Movie You Have Seen; ratings

Postby Reza » Tue Apr 24, 2018 1:46 am

Fargo - Season 1 (2014) 9/10

Black comedy (in a ten-part series) set in rural Minnesota involving deceit, malice and death. A mysterious drifter (Billy Bob Thornton) arrives in a small town and soon involves a meek insurance salesman (Martin Freeman) in a hilariously sadistic chain of events involving several brutal murders with two goofy cops (Allison Tolman & Colin Hanks) trying to crack the case. The premise - taken from Joel & Ethan Coen's 1996 movie but with no relation to that plot - keeps the location, time span and familiar quirky characters alive. Emmy award for best miniseries with all four actors nominated. Outstanding.

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Re: Last Seen Movie - The Latest Movie You Have Seen; ratings

Postby Reza » Tue Apr 24, 2018 1:45 am

Date Night (Shawn Levy, 2010) 7/10

A good comedy is hard to find and here a seemingly very ordinary start to the plot gets raised to often hilarious levels thanks to the superb comic timing of the two stars. A suburban couple (Steve Carell & Tina Fey), stuck in a drab marriage, decide to go to NYC on a dinner date just for a change. Soon they are upto their necks in trouble as they are mistaken for the wrong couple by two goons brandishing guns and working for a crooked D.A. They find themselves being chased all over the city - the car chase sequence is a riot - and they end up running across an eclectic bunch of loonies played hilariously by stars in cameos - Mark Wahlberg (minus his shirt), James Franco & Mila Kunis (as a grungy couple), Ray Liotta (as a mobster). The film recalls fond memories of Martin Scorsese's "After Hours", which was also an hilarious chase through NYC at night with equally weird characters. The two leads improvise a lot of their comic scenes together playing it absolutely straight which makes each of their outlandish predicaments even more funny, whether trading barbs with each weirdo (the word "vagina" is used a lot) or pole dancing as a means of seducing a crook. Witty and entertaining.

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Re: Last Seen Movie - The Latest Movie You Have Seen; ratings

Postby Reza » Tue Apr 24, 2018 1:44 am

The Bodyguard (Mick Jackson, 1992) 5/10

As a film this is pretty bad - a bodyguard (Kevin Costner) is hired for a singer-actress (Whitney Houston) when she is sent hate mail by an annonymous nutjob - but as a vehicle for the singing diva it does what it sets out to do. Forget the lousy script, the bad acting - surprisingly Houston (it was her movie debut) comes off better than Costner who throughout looks like a deer caught in the headlights of an oncoming car. Houston has a cocky presence on screen and seems comfortable - no doubt years of appearing in front of the camera via music videos held her in good stead. The film's highlights all involve Houston singing - "I Have Nothing", "Run to You" (both the songs were nominated for an Oscar) and especially the old Dolly Parton standard, "I Will Always Love You", which she made her own by singing it as a torchy ballad using her soaring voice to create magic. It was a moment not unlike Judy Garland singing "Born in a Trunk" in "A Star is Born" and Barbra Streisand singing "My Man" in "Funny Girl" & "Evergreen" in her own version of 'A Star is Born" - all dramatic songs sung after emotional moments during the story. The film's thriller premise concludes during the Academy Awards (the singer is nominated in the best actress category) with a lot of action and a surprise revelation about the stalker. Lousy but a guilty-pleasure movie that was a surprise hit.


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