Movie opinions thread (what have you seen, what did you think?)

100proof

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Thought for sure that would be the surfing scene. Going to Prince of Darkness tonight. The Summer of Carpenter continues!
 

SouthtownKid

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Escape from LA is an absolute banger.

It repeats everything from NY almost beat-for-beat in a worse, watered down, ham-fisted way. I don't hate it the way a lot of people do. It's fun in an absurd, campy way. But it's not a good movie.

Thought for sure that would be the surfing scene. Going to Prince of Darkness tonight. The Summer of Carpenter continues!
Jealous.
 

100proof

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Just got back from Prince of Darkness. It's been about twenty years since I'd seen it. Forgotten a lot of the little details but remembered the premise and the basic story beats. Great score, chockful of dread and has a lot of the hallmarks of a good, stripped down John Carpenter movie. The people who play the "possessed" do a great job of being unique and creepy (laughing black guy, stone-faced glasses lady, the bug man in the street, etc.). I've always considered it my least favorite of the three apocalypse movies but I might be inclined to put it over In the Mouth of Madness (as I rewatched it recently and while I still liked it, this seems more like a Carpenter movie). I do like Sam Neill's performance though.

The wife joined me and really liked it... she immediately asked if it was based on a book cuz "I would totally read that book". No, baby... that's just good screenwriting.
 

famicommander

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Wolfgang Petersen dead at 81. Just a few of the movies he directed:
Air Force One
Das Boot
The Perfect Storm
Troy
The Neverending Story
Poseidon
In the Line of Fire
 

terry.330

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Nemesis- In the far off year of 2027 a cyberneticly enhanced cop questions his humanity as he hunts down full cyborg terrorists. After being nearly killed and rebuilt multiple times he's called it quits but is forced back into action and charged with eliminating his former boss/lover.

This movie is a lot of things but good and coherent are not among them, but goddamnit they tried.

There's some great and some not so great practical effects. Enough shootouts to rival Total Recall and one of the most insane stop motion fight scenes ever attempted. Attempted being a key word that applies to just about everything here. There's style for days, too much style actually. It takes itself so serious that it's hard not to like it but no matter how hard it tries it's still B grade schlock. It's a messy hodgepodge of Blade Runner, Terminator, misc. anime and John Woo. The main problem is that it's overly ambitious but manages to fail at almost every turn, couple that with the nonsensical plot and some of the most wooden acting and atrocious dialogue ever captured on film and as Carl Weathers would say "You got yourself a stew".

Honestly it's a borderline masterpiece of the genre and all of the flaws actually manage to elevate it somehow. I kept thinking the whole time that I wish the director had been put charge of the Aeon Flux movie, it could have been amazing.

I have a feeling this did extremely well in the home video market outside of the US. It also seems to have influenced a lot of other B movies, video games and comics. It's really an interesting movie and worth watching again if you haven't seen it since the VHS and cable days. I'd put it on the same level as Dark Angle/I Come in Peace and Split Second.
 

jro

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Halloween - I had forgotten just how good this is, and why I had long considered it to be my favorite movie ever made. Re-watching it for the first time in maybe 6 or 8 years reconfirmed that it hasn't lost anything, it's still so good. Just an amazing sense of impending dread, I love how Carpenter shows The Shape over and over and over, but the viewer still isn't any more certain about it than is Laurie. Story is compact and well-told, the performances are good (Curtis is still the best final girl by a massive amount and Pleasance is awesome) outside of the usual awful hackjob from Nancy Loomis (she's in like every Carpenter movie from around this time and she's terrible in all of them), even the child actor parts work well. Still my favorite movie, hands down.

Halloween 2 - 'k, so first, it's not a Halloween movie, and other than $, I'm not sure why in the hell Carpenter agreed to put the name on it, but well, there's always Season of the Witch to go a bit further down that route of course.

But... it's still mostly fun for what it is (which is not a Halloween movie). It's a dumb slasher movie set in a hospital after hours where the main characters whisper their lines like they think they're Christian Bale in Batman and the nurses ignore the newborn ward to get naked and let Michael kill them.

Speaking of, I sort of wish there was a more clever transition from The Shape to Michael Myers (former is still awesome, latter dumb but predictable).

Fine on its own terms but clearly a monumental step down from the original.
 

terry.330

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The hospital staff in H2 are so unbelievably stupid and unlikable. Sure, they're just fodder but still...

I don't think I've ever actually sat down and watched Halloween III all the way through. Just pieces over the years on cable, I should probably fix that one of these days. I know it's not really an actual Halloween movie and I remember reading that at one point Carpenter was planning on making the series into what would basically be an anthology of general halloween themed one-offs. I think that actually would have been a good idea especially considering how bad the series as a whole is.
 

100proof

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The problem with the "anthology" idea was that they had already done two Michael Myers movies, therefore cementing the idea that he was an integral part of a "Halloween" movie. If Season of the Witch had been Halloween 2, there would've been a lot less bitching.

Season of the Witch was underrated for a long time solely because the hate it got was kind of silly and exaggerated (and with how shitty the subsequent Michael Myers movies got, people should've been thrilled they got something different) but it's gotten to the point where it's now overrated thanks to 1,000 contrarian thinkpieces and people looking to find "le hidden gEmZ". It's perfectly serviceable if a little goofy but it would've been just another forgotten direct-to-video snoozer if it didn't have the Halloween name on it.
 

terry.330

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Dog Soldiers- Probably the best werewolf movie made. While not as clever as American Werewolf in London it's balls out action, gore and grindhouse style make up for that. With some truly great effects, a surprisingly good score and solid cast it's really an all around entertaining time. My only real complaint is that the handheld camera and heavy film grain that give it that grindhouse look and feel are sometimes a bit too effective and go past loving mimicry and come off as awkward or just plain sloppy.

Neil Marshall was on a little roll there for awhile with this, The Descent and Doomsday.
 
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fake

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Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai
A really odd idea that shouldn't work but somehow does. Forest Whitaker is a sort of Batman; he's a hermit-like assassin who adheres to the code of the samurai. He feels indebted to a mob member who incidentally saved his life, and has been carrying out hits for him ever since. He doesn't use swords, though – he uses guns and even acts out chiburi movements with them. Through no fault of his own, he gets in a bit of a pickle with this mob family and, well, it was John Wick before John Wick (and seems to be an overt tribute to Le Samurai). Recommended if you're in the mood for something '90s or something that's out there but still super cool. It feels like something I would've come across on cable 20 years ago and thought "WTF is this?"
 
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terry.330

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Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai
Awesome movie and awesome soundtrack.

The Blackout's Daughter- Extremely well made indie horror directed by Anthony Perkins son. Very atmospheric, slow and effective. It doesn't spell anything out beyond the bare minimum and really takes it's time to build the overwhelming sense of dread. The younger version of the main character is really good, she is genuinely creepy as hell. I had seen a good portion of this awhile ago but didn't remember too much and I always felt like I missed some key points. Going in knowing somewhat what to expect really allowed me to take everything in this time. It's not as good as say The VVitch or It Follows as far a modern horror but it's up there. Highly recommended.
 

terry.330

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Hellraiser- One of the most iconic horror movies of all time. Unlike Night Breed Clive Barker is in full control and it shows, it's evil, gross, and brazenly sexual. I wish I could say it's a masterpiece but unfortunately due to budgetary issues most noticeable in some effects shots, some questionable and goofy scenes (namely the stupid dragon at the end) and some sloppy editing it just misses the mark. Still it's an amazingly well realized piece of work. It is legitimately disturbing, the uncle wearing the fathers skin and going after the daughter is genuinely creepy. The Cenobites are some of the most original, interesting and memorable characters ever put on screen even though they are only in it for a couple of minutes.

I actually prefer the second movie even though it also has it's fair share of problems. It's far more ambitious but expands on the first movie so well. But the first movie is still wildly effective and introduced Barkers particular style of horror in a way that changed the genre forever, it's just too bad that like so many horror franchises it's mostly junk after the initial outings but I think the first two stand on their own well enough that the rest can pretty much be ignored.
 

100proof

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I've often said Hellraiser is definitive proof that franchising ruins movies. Those original two are brilliant, subversive low-budget movies that turned horror on its head and everything after it fundamentally misunderstands the point and essentially tries to turn Pinhead (an iconic looking but minor character) in to another lame slasher villain to make a lazy studio a quick buck.
 

Syn

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I like the first two and the fourth Bloodlines.
 

StevenK

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Less was definitely more with Pinhead. What he symbolises, or at least what I think he symbolises to me, has been stuck in my head for 30 years.

I don't think I've ever had that chill recreated by any other character. Maybe a flash of it in Event Horizon, but that lacked the ambiguity.

Anyway, yeah, Hellraiser, great movie, Clive Barker, fucked up mind.
 

100proof

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I like the first two and the fourth Bloodlines.

I have a special place in my heart for Bloodlines as I watched it a LOT during a rough stretch of my life (family deaths, bad breakup) and that movie has a lot of neat ideas in it (and expanded the mythology in interesting ways) but it was hamstrung by budget cuts and executive meddling which led to a ton of reshoots and the original director quitting (the listed director is the infamous "Alan Smithee", the Director's Guild's answer to no one wanting their name associated with a film). It's kind of a jumbled mess as a result.
 

Syn

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The Sacrament

Eli Roth was one of the producers so I hoped it was better than it was. Three guys visit one of the guy's sister at a Jim Jones type cult. Things go wrong and they break out the special kool aid.

It's not bad but I felt like I'd seen it before when I hadn't.
 
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