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

Reza
Tenured Laureate
Posts: 8184
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2003 11:14 am
Location: Islamabad, Pakistan

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

Postby Reza » Thu Feb 15, 2018 6:31 am

The Prince Who Was a Thief (Rudolph Maté, 1953) 6/10

Colorful but fun-filled swashbuckler has Tony Curtis in his first lead performance (which made him an instant star) as a Bronx accented Moroccan Prince kidnapped at birth and raised as a thief. Typical Hollywood version of the "Arabian Nights" where everybody is dressed in colorful veils, pantaloons, turbans and decked with jewels and swearing by the Almighty "Allah" or calling each other a camel as an insult. The action packed plot has Curtis romancing a street urchin (Piper Laurie who would form a team with Curtis in a number of Universal productions) and his cousin, a Princess (Peggy Castle), while trying to regain his Princedom by using a stolen giant pearl to get to the throne by usurping his evil Uncle. Pure hokum has dazzling (but very fake) production values and a sense of joie de vivre which is exuberant and fun in an old fashioned way.

Reza
Tenured Laureate
Posts: 8184
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2003 11:14 am
Location: Islamabad, Pakistan

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

Postby Reza » Thu Feb 15, 2018 6:30 am

Please Believe Me (Norman Taurog, 1950) 2/10

Silly nonsense with prim Brit, Deborah Kerr, inheriting a Texas ranch of cattle who is chased by three men for her money on the boat crossing across the Atlantic. Hollywood still didn't know quite how to fit a star like Kerr into their projects. She was but a few years away from full blown stardom whuch she found with Hawaii, Pearl Harbor and that beach frolic with Burt Lancaster. Skip this dull froth.

Reza
Tenured Laureate
Posts: 8184
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2003 11:14 am
Location: Islamabad, Pakistan

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

Postby Reza » Thu Feb 15, 2018 6:30 am

Die! Die! My Darling! / Fanatic (Silvio Narizzano, 1965) 7/10

Grand Guignol hoot with Tallulah Bankhead off her rocker as a religious fanatic old hag holding prisoner her dead son's ex-fiance (Stefanie Powers as the relentlessly battered victim) in her large dilapitated house in the english countryside complete with sinsister servants (Peter Vaughn & Yootha Joyce) in tow. Great addition to the series of similarly themed 1960s horror films starring legendary screen actresses from Hollywood's past. Creepy, gripping and suspenseful Hammer horror film with one of Donald Sutherland's early roles, here cast as a simpleton gardener grunting out his dialogue. Bankhead's last film.

Reza
Tenured Laureate
Posts: 8184
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2003 11:14 am
Location: Islamabad, Pakistan

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

Postby Reza » Thu Feb 15, 2018 6:29 am

Split Second (Dick Powell, 1953) 6/10

Taut B-film variation of "The Petrified Forest" with escaped convicts (Stephen McNally and a wounded Paul Kelly) holding a disparate group hostage - a reporter (Keith Andes), a self centered wife (Alexis Smith) in Nevada for a divorce, her current squeeze (Robert Paige), a tough talking dame (Jan Sterling) whose been round the block and an old desert prospector (Arthur Hunnicutt). They all find themselves holed up in a deserted old town in the middle of the Nevada desert where the Government is about to test explode an atomic bomb. The convict leader sends for the doctor husband (Richard Egan) of the woman to help his wounded friend. As the clock ticks the suspense mounts - will the convicts kill the hostages or will they all perish in the atomic blast. The film has a memorable ending.

Reza
Tenured Laureate
Posts: 8184
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2003 11:14 am
Location: Islamabad, Pakistan

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

Postby Reza » Thu Feb 15, 2018 6:29 am

Stallion Road (James V. Kern & Raoul Walsh, 1947) 6/10

This was the late President Ronald Reagan's favourite film. He plays a veterinarian rancher who competes for the love of another rancher (Alexis Smith) with his close buddy, a jaded novelist (Zachary Scott). Good natured story with appealing stars is highlighted by a dramatic anthrax breakout endangering both horses and humans alike. Scott is particularly good playing against type with all the film's witty lines.

Reza
Tenured Laureate
Posts: 8184
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2003 11:14 am
Location: Islamabad, Pakistan

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

Postby Reza » Tue Feb 13, 2018 11:21 pm

Phantom Thread (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2017) 10/10

Daniel Day-Lewis oozes charm and sophistication as a star English couturier in his second collaboration with director Paul Thomas Anderson. Here he plays a confirmed (but hetrosexual) bachelor, fussy and a perfectionist. He fastidiously presides over his London fashion house with his sister (Leslie Manville) and confidante. His controlled reserve is brought into question when he falls in love with a German waitress (Vicky Krieps) who becomes his muse, assistant and model. As he becomes more and more controlling she has to find ways to re-establish her emotional mastery over him. This almost dream-like film, set during the early 1950s, perfectly fits into the mood prevailing during 2017. Man as a controlling sexual predator. While Day-Lewis is no vulgar American Harvey Weinstein, there is an element of a sexual predator hidden within the confines of his stiff British demeanor. The film also invokes strong memories of Hitchcock's "Rebecca" with Day-Lewis as the mysterious Max de Winter, Krieps as the innocent Joan Fontaine character and Manville playing the almost silent and very still Mrs Danvers. The film's outstanding production design and stunning costumes superbly create the 1950s British milieu. Day-Lewis who has said this is his farewell performance as an actor is simply majestic - he speaks here in his own accent after 30 years - as he preens theatrically creating yet another mesmerizing, difficult and unlikeable character you can't help liking. His two female co-stars, while clearly overshadowed by Day-Lewis, still manage to create their own space opposite him particularly the marvelous Lesley Manville. Her deadpan face and still body speak volumes and she makes a strong impression as the imperious sister who knows and understands the many moods of her moody and charismatic brother. This is one of the best films of the year and Anderson's masterpiece.

Reza
Tenured Laureate
Posts: 8184
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2003 11:14 am
Location: Islamabad, Pakistan

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

Postby Reza » Tue Feb 13, 2018 11:21 pm

Downsizing (Alexander Payne, 2017) 3/10

A shrunken man makes out with a one-legged Vietnamese dissident on a boat going down a fjord in Norway. How's that for an image? That's just one moment of many such promising moments in the screenplay that fail to achieve any real form of coherence in this satire by director/writer Payne. Here he takes on the concept of the "Land of the Giants" and tosses in the World enviornmental crisis, middle class materialism, the danger of cults along with digs at middle-brow banality. There's simply too much going on and it's all very bland starting with Matt Damon himself. A terribly bland actor to start with he seems to be playing himself - the movie is pretty long and it quickly becomes a bore watching him do basically nothing. He decides to participate in an experiment which has caught on with a lot of people in the world - to survive impending food and environmental crisis humans are being miniaturised and get to live in tiny controlled environments which are set up as luxurious housing communities. Since they are only five inches tall they can enjoy every luxury at a fraction of the cost. Damon, struggling with the hardships of everyday living, decides to jump in with his wife (Kristin Wiig, not given enough to do) only to discover that he is alone when he wakes up after being shrunk. His wife backed out at the last minute and wants a divorce. His aimless and dull life gets a bit of a kick after he meets two Eurotrashy neighbors (Christoph Waltz and Udo Kier - both very funny but jarring) and a cringeworthy Vietnamese cleaning woman (Hong Chau) who borders on broken english caricature and with whom he forges a relationship. She is an extremely grating presence but has one hilarious scene which involves the "F" word spoken repeatedly. One keeps waiting for scenes where the small people interact with normal human beings but the screenplay instead ends on a heavy note with talks of doomsday and survival. This is a major misfire from the director of "Sideways" and Nebraska".

Reza
Tenured Laureate
Posts: 8184
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2003 11:14 am
Location: Islamabad, Pakistan

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

Postby Reza » Tue Feb 13, 2018 11:20 pm

The Girl From Jones Beach (Peter Godfrey, 1949) 3/10

Silly comedy with Eddie Bracken upstaging Ronald Reagan much to the detriment of the plot - an advertising gimmick of finding the "perfect" woman which has been painted by a glamour artist (Ronald Reagan) and dubbed the "Randolph Girl". Only the woman on the canvas is a composite of 12 different girls all clamouring to be named. Enter a pretty but prim school marm (Virginia Mayo) who finds via a scandal that wearing a sexy swim suit has certain benefits as well and it's ok to be a beauty with brains. Bracken is the pal whose suicide shenenigans unfortunately form a major part of the plot. Reagan and Mayo make a good screen couple though.

Reza
Tenured Laureate
Posts: 8184
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2003 11:14 am
Location: Islamabad, Pakistan

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

Postby Reza » Tue Feb 13, 2018 11:20 pm

Marley & Me (David Frankel, 2008) 6/10

Had no clue about the ending so it came as a shock. Kept comparing Marley to Oscar who is much more well behaved thanks to his trainer. The dog here is a hurricane of bad behaviour and is bought by a couple (Owen Wilson & Jennifer Aniston) as a prelude to starting their family of which they eventually produce three. Marley remains center stage throughout with his outrageous antics - they try training him but the trainer (a ravaged Kathleen Turner) gives up immediately. The ending is hideously sad and beats the similarly blubbery last scenes in both "Wuthering Heights" and "Love Story" where both Merle Oberon and Ali MacGraw don't hold a candle to Marley's dignified but tear inducing departure.

Reza
Tenured Laureate
Posts: 8184
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2003 11:14 am
Location: Islamabad, Pakistan

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

Postby Reza » Tue Feb 13, 2018 11:19 pm

Wonder (Stephen Chbosky, 2017) 5/10

Manipulative, heart-tugging subject has been seen to death in far better films both on the big and small screen - though it's been more of a staple on the small. For me the main plot held no interest - small kid (Jacob Trembley) born with a facial disfigurement has a hard time adjusting to the jeers of fellow classmates in school - kids (and many grownups) give more importance to "looks" and fail to see a person from the inside. I instead rooted for the kid's older sister and her problems in high school - her best friend dumps her, she gains a boyfriend (woah he's African-American and it's totally cool with everyone - the film does not go "that" route as the plot is mainly about the kid), her audition for the school play and particularly her testy relationship with a mother (Julia Roberts) who has neglected her in favour of the son who needed her more which any parent is wont to do when faced with a challenged child. Owen Wilson plays the kids' dad in an almost throwaway part totally overshadowed by all the "dramatic" characters in his family and his usual irritating halting drawl of a performance quickly gets tiresome. And to top it all the kid's facial disfigurement is hardly that extreme to warrant the kind of reaction he gets from everyone around - the film was nominated for an Oscar in the makeup category. During a very brief flashback Sonia Braga pops up unexpectedly as the kids' late grandmother. A better film with a similar subject was "Mask" with characters more cutting edge than this sentimental pudding.

Reza
Tenured Laureate
Posts: 8184
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2003 11:14 am
Location: Islamabad, Pakistan

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

Postby Reza » Tue Feb 13, 2018 11:19 pm

Homecoming (Mervyn LeRoy, 1948) 8/10

Voted one of the ten worst films of 1948 by the New York Times, this is actually a very good film with MGM giving it an "A" class production starring their "King" - Clark Gable. Nobody was a bigger star than him at the time. Never a great actor but there's no denying his electric personality on screen especially when romancing one of the great beauties from the studio's roster. Here Lana Turner co-stars in their third teaming on film and their enormous chemistry made it a huge hit for the studio. A war time romance which probably had the censors in a twist as the plot revolves around adultery with the leading man in love with both a nurse and his wife. A very successful self centered surgeon (Clark Gable), in a small mid-west city, clashes with a close doctor friend (John Hodiak) who works pro-bono and wants him to help patients for free. When war breaks out he goes overseas leaving behind a wife (Anne Baxter) whom he loves and while on the front falls hopelessly in love with a cynical nurse (Lana Turner) after the two initially clash. The woman's selfless attitude during stressful moments of the battle stirs his conscience and he returns home to help his friend with his work treating malaria patients. The film belongs to Lana Turner, dressed throughout in army fatigues, playing a character far removed from the sexy roles she always played and she gives a performance of great emotional range topped by a memorable scene where she is required to act and which she aces. All four stars (Baxter and Hodiak were married at the time) are superb and it's funny to see Dame Gladys Cooper play Clark Gable's mother here - the studio juggling their contract players - a match hardly believable but totally acceptable thanks to the effortless acting of the stars. This is a great romantic soap opera and was a huge hit at the boxoffice.

Reza
Tenured Laureate
Posts: 8184
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2003 11:14 am
Location: Islamabad, Pakistan

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

Postby Reza » Tue Feb 13, 2018 11:18 pm

Flame and the Flesh (Richard Brooks, 1954) 6/10

Extremely rare film which is only available in a faded print. Hollywood here apes the European sex flicks that flooded cinemas during the 1950s starring Italian bombshells Silvana Mangano and Sophia Loren. A brunette Lana Turner plays a sexy tramp in Milan using and discarding men like dirty napkins. The film's memorable opening has Lana walk through a slum swaying her hips with a young girl following and copying her. The somewhat silly plot has her come between a gigolo (Carlos Thompson) and his girlfriend (Pier Angeli). Mostly setbound the film comes alive during the location scenes shot in Naples and on a beach in Positano. Thompson is wooden although he gets to sing four songs which he does very well. Pity the print of the film is so bad but at least one can view an interesting part played by the star who, although not a very good actress, was one of the most beautiful stars in Hollywood and for that reason alone the film desperately needs to be fixed and preserved.

Reza
Tenured Laureate
Posts: 8184
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2003 11:14 am
Location: Islamabad, Pakistan

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

Postby Reza » Tue Feb 13, 2018 11:18 pm

The Post (Steven Spielberg, 2017) 5/10

I find it hilarious how shocked Americans are when they discover their Government has been lying to them. Are they really so naive? All Governments lie and have been doing so for centuries. Spielberg shot this story in record time since the events depicted hold relevance to the present political situation in the country. The Washington Post, headed by the owner Kay Graham (Meryl Streep) and editor Ben Bradlee (Tom Hanks), published "The Pentagon Papers" in 1971 which exposd a cover-up by four U.S. Presidents about the reality of the Vietnam War which was a failure but relentlessly pursued by all the Administrations in order to save face and which was indirectly the catalyst that eventually brought down the Nixon Administration. The film is sort of a prequel to the riveting "All the President's Men" and Spielberg films it like a thriller (albeit one that is deathly slow) with Janusz Kaminski's camera moving snake-like through the cluttered newsrooms and darkly lit boardrooms and bars. The period is superbly evoked through the costumes designed by Ann Roth. The film is a triumph of production design with a superb cast. The two stars bring gravitas to the material (Streep was nominated for an Oscar - her 21st) even though Spielberg has a tendency to be heavy handed with the story which lacks the raw drama it was angling for. The film looks great but is an absolute bore.

Reza
Tenured Laureate
Posts: 8184
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2003 11:14 am
Location: Islamabad, Pakistan

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

Postby Reza » Tue Feb 13, 2018 11:18 pm

Tiger Zinda Hai (Ali Abbas Zafar, 2017) 2/10

One of the more absurd and silly films to come out of Bollywood and it also happens to be the most successful North Indian film of the year at the boxoffice - which has something to say about the paying public. Of course it's success is mainly because of a beloved star at the helm in full action mode holding a huge gun shooting bullets at the bad guys of which there are many. He also takes off his shirt. And let's not forget he is co-starring with his sexy former offscreen girlfriend in this sequel to their hit film, "Ek Tha Tiger". Retired Indian RAW agent, code named "Tiger" (Salman Khan), is here married to Pakistani ISI agent, Zoya (Katrina Kaif) and living a peaceful hidden (from the world) life in snowy Austria where the audience is shown that both are still kicking ass - he saves their son from wolves on an icy mountain while she tackles robbers in a store with a great deal of bone crunching ingenuity. The stars get to also sing and dance during a hit musical number, the intensely romantic hit Punjabi song, "Dil Diya Gallan" (sung by Pakistani singer Atif Aslam who should have had the decency to refuse singing for an Indian film since the Indian government has banned Pakistani actors from acting in their films). In the old days the leading lady would have danced in the snow wearing a sexy and flimsy saree but here we get Katrina in hot pants with nary a shudder in the intensely cold surroundings. The film's most funny plot point is RAW and ISI joining hands to rescue a group of nurses held hostage by Syrian terrorists in a hospital in Iraq. The action scenes are straight out of a cartoon. Salman flexes his muscles, Katrina kicks ass and the plot has her groped, tortured and chained by the Arab goon so that her husband can go beserk and rescue her in the nick of time - the Americans have given the rescue team a deadline before they destroy the hospital in an air strike. Oh yes, an Indian agent sacrifices his life just before handing over the Indian flag to the Pakistani agent and they all ride happily into the sunset in a bus with both nation's flags fluttering in the wind. The film is all in good spirit and "bhai chaara" between the two nations but strictly wishful thinking which for reasons not clear got banned in Pakistan. Was it because an ISI agent was depicted in an Indian film? Was it because the censors took umbrage at Katrina's, now rote, wooden performance? Or was it because the censors couldn't digest a Pakistani Muslim woman (she gets to say "Yaa Ali" a few times in between shooting to kill) being married to a Hindu man? One will never know, I guess, but I don't think our public here has missed anything much going by the overall absurdity of the plot. Although I can vouch for Salman Khan's huge popularity. I watched this film on a bootleg camera print made inside a cinema. There was intense whistling and clapping by the cinema audience when Salman first appears, his face hidden in a scarf, and the crowd went hysterical when he whips it off his face followed by endless cheers whenever he shoots one of the endless supply of Arab goons. Going by the hysteria in the cinema the film is a full "paisa vasool" experience for fans of this actor. Watch it if you like the star but skip it otherwise.

Reza
Tenured Laureate
Posts: 8184
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2003 11:14 am
Location: Islamabad, Pakistan

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

Postby Reza » Tue Feb 13, 2018 11:17 pm

Dangerously They Live (Robert Florey, 1941) 6/10

Thriller set in wartime New York about an amnesia victim (Nancy Coleman) who claims to be a British agent with information about Nazi U-boats off the American coast. Chased by German spies she is helped by a doctor (John Garfield). Hitchcock-like story, fast paced and with a sinister performance by Raymond Massey as an evil Nazi. Good fun despite a predictable conclusion.


Return to “Other Film Discussions”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests