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What is the last film you watched?

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Pineapple Express- loved it. Also, was happy to see my first red-band trailer (for Tropic Thunder) on the big screen. I had previously been watching them on the internet.

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The Mummy. Very unimpressive, save for Jerry's score (and Courage's orchestrations), which is a great effort.

Now, Another 48 Hrs. and Alien3 are still to be seen on TV tonight. And off I am ... :(

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Pineapple Express- loved it. Also, was happy to see my first red-band trailer (for Tropic Thunder) on the big screen. I had previously been watching them on the internet.

I've never seen a Red Band on the big screen. I don't understand why they don't show them more often. If the movie people are seeing is rated R, having red band trailers should be no problem.

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Mamma Mia!: It was a nice film, but nothing fantastic. It was rather odd that Streep was supposed to be the responsible mother, instead she spent all her time getting drunk or talking about sex and money. Some of the music was great - "Dancing Queen" and the "Dot Dot Dot" song were the highlights. It was sort of funny also. Bear in mind that I generally don't like chick flicks, however (though I will say that I really enjoyed Hairspray (2007)). Probably the worst film I've seen this summer, but still not bad. ***/*****

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You're not gay enough to enjoy a movie of that calibre :mrgreen: The best feel-good movie of the summer...so far.

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Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones.

What I found funny about this was how in one scene on Naboo, Natalie Portman's boobs looked like they were about to pop out, then a few scenes later on Tatooine, she's dressed like a Muslim. The movie's awesome in a stupid kind of way.

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The Color Purple: Okay, the film is too mushy from time to time but the love and passion that went into it drips off the screen. And I didn't miss Williams for one second. BTW, why didn't Quincy Jones write a more black-sounding score?

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Jones really set the template for Media Ventures with that score. 11 different people created the score, with a theme taken from another movie.

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A badly directed film. Shame, could have been better. But I still was pleasantly surprised by the change of pace in it.

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Vanilla Sky: This could've been one of the best sci-fi films of this decade if the ending was better (the last 15-20 min.). And yes, I like the McCartney song at the end.

Alex

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The Color Purple: Okay, the film is too mushy from time to time but the love and passion that went into it drips off the screen. And I didn't miss Williams for one second. BTW, why didn't Quincy Jones write a more black-sounding score?

Probably becuase the film was temped with Georges Delerue's score to Our Mother's House.

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Vanilla Sky: This could've been one of the best sci-fi films of this decade if the ending was better (the last 15-20 min.). And yes, I like the McCartney song at the end.

Alex

I recall liking it. Don't remember why. I too like the McCartney song.

Carlito's Way. After Mission to Mars, watching this again rekindled my faith in De Palma. And it also proved to me that the talk of De Palma's so-called lack of interest in actors and character is totally off-base. This is probably the most heartfelt film I've seen by him. A crime film that works entirely as drama. Even the most action-based scenes, notably the climactic chase, are all based in character. There is such a palpable need for Pacino to make that train. The film does falter a bit in some of it's dialogue scenes, notably the ones between Carlito and Gail, but, strangely, I didn't even mind the somewhat stiff and cliched dialogue too much, as it seemed to come from an earnest place. Even De Palma's detractors say that all his films look good, but I frankly don't think that's a given. Him and Vilmos Zsigmond together couldn't make something visually interesting with The Black Dahlia. But here, the gliding cameras work beautifully, offering up a strange and somewhat conflicting feel of detachment from the characters, together with Carlito's POV...but it works. The camera work feels remarkably motivated.

Patrick Doyle's score is generalyl excellent, although there a few cues that were a bit to noticable in the bad way. But his material for Carlito and Gail, and the final chase more than makes up for that. I'm in awe of how 'Grand Central' manages to convey everything necessary with such a rigid construction of it's ideas.

One of De Palma's best. I like it far more than Scarface.

The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes. After all I'd heard about how this Billy Wilder film was butchered, I was expecting an incoherent, muddled mess. The film does suffer in it's plotting, but, otherwise, I had a wonderful time with it. Excellent performacne by Robert Stephens in the lead, and a stunning Rozsa score. In fact, all the music in the film is great, even the source stuff (the Russian dances adapted by Rozsa). I hadn't known about Rozsa's cameo, it was a nice small surprised. More than anything, I was surprised by how touching the film was, both in it's belief in the character, and in the nicely transmitted muted passion of the character. To call it a failed comedy is a rather strange observation.

I keep on thinking that after the half-a-dozen masterpieces I've seen by Wilder, that I'm gonna stop finding good films in his ouvre. I am thrilled to be consistantly dissapointed in this assumption.

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The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes. After all I'd heard about how this Billy Wilder film was butchered, I was expecting an incoherent, muddled mess. The film does suffer in it's plotting, but, otherwise, I had a wonderful time with it. Excellent performacne by Robert Stephens in the lead, and a stunning Rozsa score. In fact, all the music in the film is great, even the source stuff (the Russian dances adapted by Rozsa). I hadn't known about Rozsa's cameo, it was a nice small surprised. More than anything, I was surprised by how touching the film was, both in it's belief in the character, and in the nicely transmitted muted passion of the character. To call it a failed comedy is a rather strange observation.

I keep on thinking that after the half-a-dozen masterpieces I've seen by Wilder, that I'm gonna stop finding good films in his ouvre. I am thrilled to be consistantly dissapointed in this assumption.

Great film, glad you liked it. Who called it a "failed comedy", by the way? I think what comedy there is works well, but the film is mainly a drama (and a very good one). I'd love to see the deleted material (especially if it's as good as Rozsa claims in the CD booklet), but I think the film works anyway as it is. And the score is one of my absolute favourites.

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Trekkies and Trekkies 2

I'm going to Dragon*Con in a few weeks, which seemed like a good excuse to watch these two movies. They're really kinda lovely. Not deep art, or anything, but they do bring up a lot of food for thought, especially amongst people who have any little bit of fandom in their blood.

I'm a big Star Trek fan, but nowhere big enough to do things like dress up in costume (in "real life," I mean; I'd do it at a con if I had something good) or remodel my apartment to look like the bridge of the Enterprise, or get a picture of an actor tattooed on my thigh. On the other hand, the mere fact that I go to a sci-fi con makes some people roll their eyes, so I guess I'm a bigger geek than a lot of people think is normal.

The most interesting thing in the movies: the debate over whether or not it was acceptable for the lady to wear her Star Trek uniform to jury duty. I haven't yet figured out where I come down on that issue, but it's a good one to debate.

The first movie is probably the better of the two. The second is good also, but gets bogged down in a couple of places; it also has about an hour of deleted scenes, some of which are excellent.

I'd say these are definitely worth seeing for Star Trek fans, and maybe even for people who aren't.

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Carlito's Way. After Mission to Mars, watching this again rekindled my faith in De Palma. And it also proved to me that the talk of De Palma's so-called lack of interest in actors and character is totally off-base.

Pacino's performance in Carlito is perhaps my favourite of his.

This is probably the most heartfelt film I've seen by him.

I'd probably give that award to Casualties of War, if only for the heartbreaking bridge scene.

A crime film that works entirely as drama. Even the most action-based scenes, notably the climactic chase, are all based in character. There is such a palpable need for Pacino to make that train.

It's definitely one of my all-time favourites. Even if it perhaps gets a bit cliched at times, it always does because that's what works for it. I find it nearly flawless.

Even De Palma's detractors say that all his films look good, but I frankly don't think that's a given. Him and Vilmos Zsigmond together couldn't make something visually interesting with The Black Dahlia.

Oh, it had two or three excellent visual moments. If nothing else, I want to see it again for those.

Patrick Doyle's score is generalyl excellent, although there a few cues that were a bit to noticable in the bad way. But his material for Carlito and Gail, and the final chase more than makes up for that. I'm in awe of how 'Grand Central' manages to convey everything necessary with such a rigid construction of it's ideas.

I love that little time motif he uses in Grand Central, along with De Palma's pans to clocks and stuff.

One of De Palma's best. I like it far more than Scarface.

Yes.

Now if only I'd finally replace my non-anamorphic DVD... I haven't watched the film in years.

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no its not, unless your a thug gang banger, which might get you shot for your opinion of the movie

watched Ben Hur again,

its one of the great epics

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... and a stunning Rozsa score. In fact, all the music in the film is great, even the source stuff (the Russian dances adapted by Rozsa). I hadn't known about Rozsa's cameo, it was a nice small surprised.

The score is adapted from Rozsa's 'Concerto For Violin And orchestra'. The other themes are new material.

About Schmidt: Wow, I really loved this movie the first time I saw it, but now I was kinda bored with it.

Alex - scratching Alexander Payne from his list

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The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes. After all I'd heard about how this Billy Wilder film was butchered, I was expecting an incoherent, muddled mess. The film does suffer in it's plotting, but, otherwise, I had a wonderful time with it. Excellent performacne by Robert Stephens in the lead, and a stunning Rozsa score. In fact, all the music in the film is great, even the source stuff (the Russian dances adapted by Rozsa). I hadn't known about Rozsa's cameo, it was a nice small surprised. More than anything, I was surprised by how touching the film was, both in it's belief in the character, and in the nicely transmitted muted passion of the character. To call it a failed comedy is a rather strange observation.

I keep on thinking that after the half-a-dozen masterpieces I've seen by Wilder, that I'm gonna stop finding good films in his ouvre. I am thrilled to be consistantly dissapointed in this assumption.

Have you picked up Tadlow's complete re-recording of the score?

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Indeed I did, a few weeks back. And I'm very happy with it. I thought The Guns of Navarone sounded great...this one is really flawless, a superb album.

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The score is adapted from Rozsa's 'Concerto For Violin And orchestra'. The other themes are new material.

I was under the impression that Rozsa based the concerto on the score?

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The Concerto was commissioned by Heifetz in 1956 (movie is from 1971). According to the liner notes, Wilder often listened to the concerto, and had planned for a long time on adapting it for a score.

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Wall E: I like it a lot. It had great visuals--whoever came up with all those machines was really inspired by the film. Some of the themes and ideas in the film reminded me a great deal of Fahrenheit 451 (I haven't seen the film, just the book), but they were still great. And I loved the environmental message. I prefer Toy Story and Finding Nemo, but this one was probably in third. One thing I thought was nice was that this seemed like the first Pixar film that wasn't made mainly to entertain kids. I mean, the others had messages and themes, and this one did have some comedy, but it seemed like the film was more focused on the plot, the themes, and the visuals than the cartoony comedy. The score was very nice, I'll probably pick it up sometime.

And the short film was my favorite Pixar short film.

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Makes sense, the Heifetz recording I have seems to be from 63.

I have these recordings of the Violin Concerto:

From 1996:

51WCYCMGXJL._SS500_.jpg

From 2000:

fb03228348a0d61349eae010.L.jpg

Alex

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Tropic Thunder

The thought that occurred to me about halfway through this movie is that what it reminded me of was the kind of comedy that seemed to get made a lot during the late '70s and early '80s: you know, stuff like Animal House and The Blues Brothers and Caddyshack and Stripes and Spies Like Us. Obviously, the comparison to those last two is valid; the others may be a bit of a stretch. What I really mean is that this is a dumb, dumb movie, but it creates such a world of dumbness unto itself that it just feels like you've fallen into a different, better, and altogether funnier universe.

I don't know that I think this is as funny as any of those movies (except for Spies Like Us, a bad movie, but one I have a very soft spot for). But maybe it is. I know I laughed a lot. I also tend to judge comedies based on whether or not they still amuse me the fifth or sixth time I see them, so it's a little early to say.

I can say without a doubt that if not for one H. Ledger, I'd be insistent that Robert Downey Jr. was the early front-runner for deserving a Best Supporting Actor award come Oscars. And even with the Ledger factor, he's still a front-runner for deserving a nomination. He probably won't get one; but hey, maybe the Academy will grow a pair just this one time.

If you even think you want to see Tropic Thunder, then you want to see Tropic Thunder. I can't imagine that you'd be disappointed.

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American Psycho: This was the third time now and, amazing, I still like it. I can't say that about too many movies. It's odd that Mary Harron made only one film because she's a talented moviemaker. Maybe she's waiting for the right material to come along? I wonder what that orchestral music was when Bale had his mental breakdown (during the climax of the film).

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Makes sense, the Heifetz recording I have seems to be from 63.

I have these recordings of the Violin Concerto:

From 1996:

51WCYCMGXJL._SS500_.jpg

From 2000:

fb03228348a0d61349eae010.L.jpg

Alex

Which would you recommend? Also- do you have the Tadlow album? Do you know how the experiences of the score and the concerto differ?

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The Lady Eve. Preston Sturgis' 1941 comedy starring Henry Fonda and Barbara Stanwyck. Fonda's the rich & naive romantic, Stanwyck's the con-lady who falls for him. He thinks she conned him, calls it off, she comes back for revenge in the guise of someone else, they end up together again. Some great stuff in there, particularly the very long two-shot of the both of them during her seduction. But ultimately, did not leave much of an impact.

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Transformers: It's okay. Shia does great, and most of the other acting is good as well. The best part of this film is the comedy, not the action, which was pretty bad. The camera was shaking so much, I could never really tell what was going on. There were too many boring characters, like the army man (don't even know his name). The music was good, if repetitive at times. The SFX were good as well, much better than TGC, which won the Oscar. The film was too long, ESPECIALLY the last action sequence. I was really tired of it by then. And by the end of the film, I was tired of a bright light always shinining right into the camera. I love that look, but it was in every other scene in this film, and it got really annoying. **3/4/*****

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The Telarc CD, definitely, both for the playing and the sound recording.

I only have the Heifetz recording so far, and I've only listened to that once, in MP3 form, before I picked up the CD. I did incidentally pick up the DVD for 3 euros today. I remember it being charming but ultimately somewhat of a failure (the conclusion seemed acceptable at best), but even if that assessment holds, it's still worth 3 euros. Only my second Wilder DVD, too, I'm afraid.

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Transformers: It's okay. Shia does great, and most of the other acting is good as well. The best part of this film is the comedy, not the action, which was pretty bad. The camera was shaking so much, I could never really tell what was going on. There were too many boring characters, like the army man (don't even know his name). The music was good, if repetitive at times. The SFX were good as well, much better than TGC, which won the Oscar. The film was too long, ESPECIALLY the last action sequence. I was really tired of it by then. And by the end of the film, I was tired of a bright light always shinining right into the camera. I love that look, but it was in every other scene in this film, and it got really annoying. **3/4/*****

I'm opposite with this film. I thought the first have was extremely cringe-worthy, especially the stupid comedy. I love the last 30-40 minutes or so, in fact I love them so much that I would call them brilliant action sequences. The music is also extremely good, which is rare for even me to say about an RCP composer aside from HZ/JP/HGW.

Tropic Thunder (****/****)

This just jumped to one of my favorite films of the summer, even the year. This movie is so perfect that I would call it one of the best comedies I have ever seen. It's a shame Owen Wilson didn't get to play his part, as I could imagine him doing genius with his role. However, Matthew McConaughey was pretty good in the part. Tom Cruise is nothing short of genius, and I wouldn't call it extreme to say it's one of his best roles. The entire cast couldn't have been better, everyone was perfect. I also loved the score so much that I will buy it, maybe even the soundtrack if there is a release, just for that great remix in the end credits.

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The Telarc CD, definitely, both for the playing and the sound recording.

I only have the Heifetz recording so far, and I've only listened to that once, in MP3 form, before I picked up the CD. I did incidentally pick up the DVD for 3 euros today. I remember it being charming but ultimately somewhat of a failure (the conclusion seemed acceptable at best), but even if that assessment holds, it's still worth 3 euros. Only my second Wilder DVD, too, I'm afraid.

The Telarc CD is stunning. It makes the violin concerto sound as if it is a masterpiece. You should've bought that instead of the Wilder DVD, Marian. ;)

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Transformers has amazing special effects, you can't deny that. I think the Academy just severely didn't want to give Michael Bay an Oscar which would increase his ego.

I can kinda deny it, but only in a spiteful, churlish way.

The effects are amazing in and of themselves, but they're used so poorly in some sequences that they become wasted opportunities. And I cannot make myself enjoy effects that exist in complete obliviousness of story; I just can't do it. They're like seeing ugly people in a hot car: a real waste.

And that, to me, is the essence of Transformers.

And yet, I'm such a Shia LaBeouf fan that I'm sure to see the sequel (provided I'm still working at a theatre and see it for free).

And Koray, we're in agreement on Tropic Thunder. That one was fine stuff. God bless Tom Cruise; that man is a national treasure. A lunatic-fringe type of national treasure, but the movies are so devoid of genuine star power these days that I'll take any nutball as long as he's got charisma and the ability to pick good movies to star in. Cruise has both of those things.

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I couldn't see what was going on during Transformers. Its confusing action scenes reminded me of Batman Begins. Sometimes the camera is too close on the action. Me no liking that.

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I couldn't see what was going on during Transformers. Its confusing action scenes reminded me of Batman Begins. Sometimes the camera is too close on the action. Me no liking that.

Exactly! The action may not have seemed as long if I could understand what the hell was going on. Still, that final one would have dragged on no matter what, it just would have been a bit more enjoyable if the camera wasn't moving and cutting so often, and if wasn't always zoomed in on the Transformers.

Also it was hard to differentiate the good Transformers from the bad when they were fighting--I barely knew whether I should be cheering or not when a big guy exploded.

Another thing I was slightly surprised about was some of the subject matter--a large population of the Transformers fan club exists of young children, but there was tons of stuff that seemed too mature for them (violent action scenes, scantily dressed women, talk of masturbation [not just references that children wouldn't understand--flat out talk about it], etc.).

Still, I see it did pretty good at the Box Office.

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Star Trek II; The Wrath of Khan

It was my first time. I really liked it. It is as good as the first one, but for different reasons. The villain was decent, even with this dreadful hair style :) I just wish he and Kirk ever met on screen in this film. Some of the effects looked cheap as compared to TMP. The finale was very moving. I am one of those people who didn't see Spock's death coming. Seriously.

No I need to see the third...

Karol

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I thought the first half of Transformers was kinda fun. Lebeuf was good. The second half was mind-numbingly boring, with Jon Voight's career hitting a new low.

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