Film The Redcafe Movie review thread

The Corinthian

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Ad Astra

This is right up my wheel house, a long slow Sci-fi movie with lovely shots and a great soundtrack. Brad Pitt is always a watchable performer too.

9/10 personally but I can imagine it's an easy movie to hate.
This movie got a lot of hate from people I know but I loved it. Thought Tommy Lee Jones was superb too. It’s a really nice novel take on the Heart of Darkness trope.
 

Oldyella

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This movie got a lot of hate from people I know but I loved it. Thought Tommy Lee Jones was superb too. It’s a really nice novel take on the Heart of Darkness trope.
Definitely, given how short a time he had on screen TLJ was great.
 

pauldyson1uk

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Lair

A fractured family are forced to face their demons, metaphorically and literally, as they unwittingly become embroiled in a man's attempt to prove the existence of the supernatural in order to overturn a friend's murder conviction.
It has its faults, but the story was decent, but I wanted more from it.
The ending was disappointing.

4/10
 

Wibble

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Ad Astra

This is right up my wheel house, a long slow Sci-fi movie with lovely shots and a great soundtrack. Brad Pitt is always a watchable performer too.

9/10 personally but I can imagine it's an easy movie to hate.
Really enjoyed the first half and just when I expected it to get better it went nowhere and took forever to get there. Which was a shame.
 

nickyboy1981

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Master and Commander

I'm not sure how historically accurate it is, but its a cracking movie. I'm stumped that we never got sequels at the time. Solid performances all round and the action really has some oomph. Just over 2 hours and flew bye

9/10
One of my all time favourite films. Apparantly it costs an absolute bomb to use those ships which contributed to the decision not to make a sequel. I should really read the books.
 

Dirty Schwein

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Thoughts on Identity?

Been a while since I viewed the film but seem to recall it was a multiple personality plot, or dissociative identity perhaps.
I really enjoyed that. Loved the setup. Not sure it holds up now but I see it at the cinema knowing nothing about it and had a blast.
 

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Finch

As a post-apocalyptic movie I enjoyed it, but to be honest I won't watch it again.
The story is depressing and there's no perspective. Is there a hidden message or a deeper meaning? Protect the ones and things you love (in this case the dog) at all costs as that makes us human?

The rocky relationship between Finch and the machine at the start of the movie is kinda hard to watch and quite unfair to the machine. Later in the movie the relationship improves, but then Finch dies, what the heck?

The movie mentions other people scavaging for food and surviving, but, apart of the car chase-scene, I haven't seen a single living person apart from Finch.

There are many things unexplained. Unfortunately, I don't think there will be a sequel.

Score: 7,5
 

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We could do with this sort of radical and punchy storytelling on a number of overlong and unnecessarily complicated films over the last few decades....

The Sting (1973)
The Real FBI agents were outside the building and arrested all the miscreants as they tried to leave. All received fair prison sentences and the seized money was redistributed to gambling charities and a shelter for retired racing horses.
 

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84 Charing Cross Road. A struggling New York author (Anne Bancroft) contacts a London bookstore by letter in the late 40s to find some second-hand books. A correspondence that last two decades follows, in which the bookstores employees (first just one (Anthony Hopkins; Judy Dench plays his wife), then the others also) correspond with the author and they become good friends. There are a few other developments that I won't spoil here, but that's the plot really. Oh, it's all based on true events - this author really corresponded with that bookstore, etc.

And yes, that's it. There is no more story, and barely anything else to say. So no, it's not an action film, there is no mystery, there is also very little drama (until near the end). It's just an extremely calm and friendly film (and fairly short) about people bonding over books and life through letters. I enjoyed it, but you should really head into this in the right state of mind, otherwise it'll just be a huge bore.

I'm not sure what this film's genre really is, but I'd give it a 7/10 in there. It's rather nice, but I think a bit too 'nothing-y' for a higher rating.
 

Cheimoon

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On another note, can anyone recommend any good vlogs about filmmaking? I am thinking about something in the style of Every Frame A Painting on YouTube:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCjFqcJQXGZ6T6sxyFB-5i6A

I really love that channel - it has given me in a lot of insights into what to look for in films from a really visual perspective. They have stopped making new videos so I would love to find something similar, but no luck so far.

To be clear: I am not as interested in deep analyses of single films, that's a different perspective.

(Also-also: I am aware of Nerdwriter, but I don't like that one (too full of himself for me), and I also don't like videos in which the narration is heavily edited so that the speech flow becomes unnatural. It irritates me.)
 

Sweet Square

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On another note, can anyone recommend any good vlogs about filmmaking? I am thinking about something in the style of Every Frame A Painting on YouTube:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCjFqcJQXGZ6T6sxyFB-5i6A

I really love that channel - it has given me in a lot of insights into what to look for in films from a really visual perspective. They have stopped making new videos so I would love to find something similar, but no luck so far.

To be clear: I am not as interested in deep analyses of single films, that's a different perspective.

(Also-also: I am aware of Nerdwriter, but I don't like that one (too full of himself for me), and I also don't like videos in which the narration is heavily edited so that the speech flow becomes unnatural. It irritates me.)
The Cinema Cartography is quite good.

https://www.youtube.com/c/TheCinemaCartography/videos
 

Cheimoon

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Cheimoon

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Downton Abbey. The 2019 film. Well, 'film'. It's about a royal visit and an excellent addition to the series, with all the usual characters, storylines, machinations, and overall feelgood atmosphere. Like one of their holiday specials, but distributed in cinemas. And that's where it goes wrong, cause this is nonsense as a film. There are no stakes, a very thin story, and I imagine this is completely impenetrable for people that have not seen the series because of the few dozen characters you're supposed to know already. And I read there's another film coming out soon - so why didn't they just do another season and work out all these plotlines properly?

Anyway, a great watch for Downton fans, but anyone new to the series should probably just start in season 1, or watch another feelgood period drama instead.
 

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One of my all time favourite films. Apparantly it costs an absolute bomb to use those ships which contributed to the decision not to make a sequel. I should really read the books.
The film is an amalgam of several of O'Brien's books. The Acheron in the film was based on an American ship in the book and the enemy was the fledgling United States Navy. It's been years since I read any of the Aubrey books (I was at school at the time) but at the time, I liked the Hornblower books better.
 

Parma Dewol

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Recently rewatched the Planet of the Apes reboot trilogy. Didn’t seem to fully appreciate them first time around but thoroughly enjoyed them.

Watched the lot over the course of a week and was left wanting more - not often I say that after three movies.

The way they did Caesar is incredible. Poignant in parts, some terrific scenes, excellent soundtrack too. Well worth a first or repeat viewing.
 

pauldyson1uk

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Westworld

It was on BBC tonight thought I would watch, 49 years old, stood the test of time very well I though.
Strange, I enjoyed it more than ever this time, 9 years since I last watched i, gave it a 7 then, going to up it.

8/10
 

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Stopped watching Don't look up after the first15 minutes. The president scene was the last nail in the coffin.

0/5
 

Superunknown

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Ad Astra

This is right up my wheel house, a long slow Sci-fi movie with lovely shots and a great soundtrack. Brad Pitt is always a watchable performer too.

9/10 personally but I can imagine it's an easy movie to hate.
A little in-joke between me and the wife is that we refer to this film as "Dad Astra". :lol:
The first two thirds of the film are brilliant. The depiction of space and off-Earth is great. But, the final third really felt flat to the both of us. I didn't really enjoy the last third of the film and it just petered out for me, which was a shame as I was loving it up until that point.
 

Wibble

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A little in-joke between me and the wife is that we refer to this film as "Dad Astra". :lol:
The first two thirds of the film are brilliant. The depiction of space and off-Earth is great. But, the final third really felt flat to the both of us. I didn't really enjoy the last third of the film and it just petered out for me, which was a shame as I was loving it up until that point.
Agreed. Fell off a cliff.
 

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Gunpowder Milkshake. Both fun and crap. It's basically a variant of John Wick, where the criminal underworld has an entire parallel society with its own institutions, and you don't really see the 'normal' world at all. Except this film has a lot more humour, and the good side (the three main characters and three people helping them) consists of all women, while the bad side are all men. That's a nice touch for a change.

Kinda as with John Wick, the story is a mix of revenge and evading getting killed by small armies sent by underground bosses because of some weird mix-up. This is also a very stylish film in terms of colours, camera angles, shots, and so on. And of course there is a ton of gratuitous violence and a good few cool fight scenes.

So that's the fun part (if you're into that sort of thing), but it's all very unbalanced. The big shoot-out with some tension comes about half an hour before the end, and the rest just features the main characters breezing through what also could have been be tense action scenes. The pacing is also off, as quick action sequences are followed by slow scenes that take too long and add little. Further, some stylistic touches don't work at all, such as music fading in and out at (what I thought were) the wrong moments, and slow-mos at weird moments.

So: fun, but also crap. Fine if you're in for stylish violence and have low expectations. 5.5/10?
 
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hungrywing

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On another note, can anyone recommend any good vlogs about filmmaking? I am thinking about something in the style of Every Frame A Painting on YouTube:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCjFqcJQXGZ6T6sxyFB-5i6A

I really love that channel - it has given me in a lot of insights into what to look for in films from a really visual perspective. They have stopped making new videos so I would love to find something similar, but no luck so far.

To be clear: I am not as interested in deep analyses of single films, that's a different perspective.

(Also-also: I am aware of Nerdwriter, but I don't like that one (too full of himself for me), and I also don't like videos in which the narration is heavily edited so that the speech flow becomes unnatural. It irritates me.)
Regarding the bolded part, he has that 'breathy' dramatic delivery.

Maybe this fellow?
https://www.youtube.com/c/LessonsfromtheScreenplay
 

utdalltheway

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American Sniper. It's kind of a weird film. It's well filmed and acted (nothing extraordinary, but solid as usual from directer Clint Eastwood and main guy Bradley Cooper), but I thought the narrative was severely lacking, in two ways that I probably have to spoiler to discuss.
First, it seems that the film wants to show how war damages the fighers mentally, but you get very little of that. You would need to see much more of Kyle back home to see how it affects him and his family. Instead, you mostly see him being this awesome soldier in Iraq, while the interludes back home in the US are so short that there isn't really time to develop the psychological angle at all. We just have to get it all from his wife (Sienna Miller) telling him that he isn't really there with them. And poof, we're back in Iraq and he's killing people again. I started making fun of it halfway through the film, and could predict exactly when we were switching back to an Iraq scene. There is just no depth or credibility to it at all.

This perspective is even worse at the end, cause going home permanently should be where the PTSD really comes out - but it doesn't, cause we see Kyle sulking a bit and hear the war in his head in front of a switched-off tv, and then get healed instantly once he starts helping other vets. (It may not have been instant in actual time, but given we jump from brief scene to brief scene in a matter of minutes, it's instant for me as a watcher.)

The second issue, and tied in with my previous paragraph, is that there is virtually no dramatic arch. In a normal film story, there is some kind of tension or issue, or whatever sort of drama. But not here. The guy goes to war and becomes a legend. He loses a few friends, but he avenges them. He is missed back home, but when he returns permanently, he overcomes his PTSD and becomes a beloved father again. And then he's killed suddenly. I know that's more or less what actually happened to Kyle, but it's just lame for a film. From a dramatic point of view, you'd expect the PTSD to become a real issue, or that he is killed in the war he can't get away from anymore, or something more dramatic with his fellow soldiers, or whatever else that actually produces a dramatic arch. But there's none of that. Everything the film builds towards falls apart by Kyle just becoming normal again (very quickly, as I mentioned above) - and then he randomly gets killed in an unrelated event (at least in the film there's no explanation).
So when the film was done, I was basically left stunned. Really, is that the ending? How is this a film? Why isn't it just a documentary or other kind of hommage? Why was this film praised so much? I guess I can get the feelgood factor for Americans that like to see their war heroes, but for anyone else...?

Also, I read that this movie depicts the messiness of the Iraq War, but does it really? We get nothing about the Iraqis, nothing about the intentions and failures of the occupying forces, next to nothing about anyone's doubts (there's a brief discussion once, but Kyle isn't the doubting kind). The insurgents, too, are just portrayed as cannon fodder, apart from the Butcher and the Sniper, who were more or less invented (at least in this specific form) to give Kyle some semblance of specific motivation in his actions. (I think I read that Spielberg wrote those into the plot. I think he might have made a very different film if he had directed it.)

So yeah, a pretty good film - until the last half hour, which made me wonder why I had been watching any of this.
I thought it was rubbish. I couldn’t figure out what all the hype was about.
 

Desert Eagle

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Watched a few movies on the plane recently so here are my quick reviews:

Shang chi and the ten rings:

I thought it was ok, nothing special but decent enough to pass the time. Did not like the main actors performance, thought it was incredibly one note. 5.5/10

Drive my car:

A japanese film based on a Murakami novel apparently. Strong acting and the cinematography and directing I quite liked. The plot wasn't the greatest but it's meant to be an emo vibe thing and i think it suceeded. 7/10

9 days:

An interesting movie where a guy is selecting souls to inhabit a body and asks them questions about life and stuff to pick a winner. They kind of attempt to break down parts of a persons personality into individuals so you have the cynic, the do gooder, the anxious one etc Decent acting but fell a little flat for me for some reason. 6/10

Fortune favors Lady Nikuko:

Very ghibli esque. Story is about a girl being raised by a single mom in a small japanese town by the ocean. She has to deal with growing up, her mothers issues, school, puberty etc. Really beautifully animated and some laugh out loud and tears fall down your face moments. Loved it, highly recommend. 8.5/10
 

frostbite

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Stopped watching Don't look up after the first15 minutes. The president scene was the last nail in the coffin.

0/5
Same for me! During the vomit scene. By then, I was ready to vomit, too!

These are not scientists and this is not how science works. The whole thing (at least the 15 minutes or so that I watched) was completely stupid, just trying to "impress" us with each implausible scene. Calculations on the blackboard? Really? Everyone uses software today. Finding zero on the blackboard, after (silly) calculations, what a shock! The army wanted to transport them to DC or someplace and they used a huge plane for two people? And no other scientific team in the world was verifying or cross checking anything before informing the president?

I wonder why Hollywood does not hire a couple of PhD students to serve as "consultants" for each movie. It would be cheap. And they'd help construct a realistic depiction of the scientific world. Most of the time this would improve their movies.
 
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frostbite

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A Hero (2021)

Iranian movie, available on Amazon Prime in the US. About social situations, misunderstandings, bad luck, and bureaucracy. I recommend the movie, it is very good in my opinion. The main character Rahim is very likable. The story has some plot holes, but it is interesting. A surprise for me was that Rahim seemed to be more worried about "his honor" than about going to prison. No happy ending, but it is not a dark movie.

8/10
 

Suv666

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Tragedy of Macbeth was pretty good. Incredibly beautiful as well.
8/10
 

Roosney

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Same for me! During the vomit scene. By then, I was ready to vomit, too!

These are not scientists and this is not how science works. The whole thing (at least the 15 minutes or so that I watched) was completely stupid, just trying to "impress" us with each implausible scene. Calculations on the blackboard? Really? Everyone uses software today. Finding zero on the blackboard, after (silly) calculations, what a shock! The army wanted to transport them to DC or someplace and they used a huge plane for two people? And no other scientific team in the world was verifying or cross checking anything before informing the president?

I wonder why Hollywood does not hire a couple of PhD students to serve as "consultants" for each movie. It would be cheap. And they'd help construct a realistic depiction of the scientific world. Most of the time this would improve their movies.
Yeah good points. The chalkboard thingy was the first hit. During the stupid annoying scene where the main characters call their friends / families after hanging outside the Oval Office for hours I thought I'll give this movie 1 more chance. It was blown in the next 20 seconds xD
 

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Sweet Square

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The army wanted to transport them to DC or someplace and they used a huge plane for two people? And no other scientific team in the world was verifying or cross checking anything before informing the president?
Tbh I haven't seen the film yet but isn't it a satire on our failure to face climate change ?

If I was to guess, the using a huge plane to transport two people scene is mostly a joke. Although it's really not far from reality


Europe's sky is filling up with near-empty polluting planes that serve little other purpose than safeguarding airlines' valuable time slots at some of the world's most important airports.

The highly contagious Omicron variant of COVID-19 has put many off flying, and because of it, getting people and goods from point A to point B has become an afterthought for thousands of flights. It has created strange bedfellows, with environmentalists and major airlines united to cut down on empty or near-empty flights by pressuring the European Union — a pledged global leader in combating climate change — to tweak the rules on securing airport slots.

Landing and departure slots for popular routes in the biggest airports are an extremely precious commodity in the industry, and to keep them, airlines have to guarantee a high percentage of flights. It is why loss-making flights sometimes have to be maintained to ensure companies keep their slots.


German giant Lufthansa said it would have to fly an additional 18,000 "unnecessary" flights through the winter to hold on to landing slots. Even if the holidays brought a big increase in passengers — marked by thousands of flight cancellations that left travelers stranded — the rest of the winter period could be slow as omicron surges worldwide.

Running near-empty flights to preserve time slots was an accepted industry practice despite the pollution concerns, but the pandemic slump in flying put that in question. Normally, airlines had to use 80% of their given slots to preserve their rights, but the EU has cut that to 50% to ensure as few empty or near-empty planes crisscross the sky as possible.

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/empty-flights-time-slots-eu-greta-thunberg/
 

Cheimoon

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Dune. The Villeneuve one. I had been looking forward to do this a lot, so naturally I'm a bit disappointed. :D It looks fantastic of course, and I like how it's uncompromising in its art; there is no hurry to get to the next action scene or anything like that, it takes its time to let everything play out patiently. I suppose it also does justice to the story, although it's been a few decades since I read the book and I really don't remember much of it.

But I felt the film lacks the narrative, intellectual, or emotional depth that its slow pace and style suggest. As presented, it's really a rather straightforward story, and Villeneuve is never very good in the emotional side (at least not in his films that I've seen, except Incendies). So I feel the film can't really support its own suggested weight, and hence drags on a bit.

Still, I'm happy I saw this. You can trust Villeneuve to make a sci-fi epic that feels leisurely and majestic, and not like just another wild blockbuster. And I'm really looking forward to part 2, which I'd expect to be a lot less bleak!
 

Wibble

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Dune. The Villeneuve one. I had been looking forward to do this a lot, so naturally I'm a bit disappointed. :D It looks fantastic of course, and I like how it's uncompromising in its art; there is no hurry to get to the next action scene or anything like that, it takes its time to let everything play out patiently. I suppose it also does justice to the story, although it's been a few decades since I read the book and I really don't remember much of it.

But I felt the film lacks the narrative, intellectual, or emotional depth that its slow pace and style suggest. As presented, it's really a rather straightforward story, and Villeneuve is never very good in the emotional side (at least not in his films that I've seen, except Incendies). So I feel the film can't really support its own suggested weight, and hence drags on a bit.

Still, I'm happy I saw this. You can trust Villeneuve to make a sci-fi epic that feels leisurely and majestic, and not like just another wild blockbuster. And I'm really looking forward to part 2, which I'd expect to be a lot less bleak!
Agreed about being a bit underwhelming. As for the bolded bit I though Arrival and Blade Runner 2049 has very satisfyingly emotional endings.
 

Cheimoon

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Agreed about being a bit underwhelming. As for the bolded bit I though Arrival and Blade Runner 2049 has very satisfyingly emotional endings.
Yeah, I agree, the emotional depth is there; Bladerunner has other emotional moments too. Maybe I should have phrase this better.

I think Villeneuve has a rather clinical style (which I otherwise love visually) and has fairly anonymous-sounding soundtracks, which together don't really make those moments come out very well, I find. For instance, I think a key part of the emotional aspects of the ending in Bladerunner was the reuse of Vangelis's Tears in Rain music - while the rest of the 2049 soundtrack was nothing like that in terms of its feel. In Dune, there is less emotional depth, and so combined with Villeneuve's style, I feel the whole film is a little flat in that respect.

I do think the Dune soundtrack was a lot more interesting that the Bladerunner 2049 soundtrack actually. Both done by Zimmer, but there was more identity and less bombast in the Dune one; sometimes it actually distinctly reminded of Vangelis in some of its melodic touches.
 

Vidyoyo

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Bad Guy. Movie by Korean filmmaker Kim Ki Duk, about a guy who forces a woman into prostitution. The characters and events are all completely dislikeable but somehow it gets you to go from absolutely hating them to sympathising with them. The whole thing is akin to an experiment in stockholm syndrome, replicated at viewer level in a way that just screams Michael Haneke. At its root I think is a message about how systematic abuse of power damages people. It's also unclear what's real and what's not - though being a film it could be argued it's all a dream. Is that too meta? 3/5