Movie Thread: The Dissection Room

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Re: Movie Thread: The Dissection Room

Postby Garrett Gilchrist » Sun May 21, 2017 8:27 pm

Fun game: anytime you see a clip reel of "all-time classic films" for "Cinephiles," count how many of the movies were made by or star terrible, terrible people. Including racists and people who should really be in jail for sexual assault. Count what percentage. Is it most of them?

Hey look, it's Woody Allen, Klaus Kinski, Mel Gibson, Alejandro Jodorowsky, Frank Miller, Roman Polanski, etc. etc. etc., and they're not in jail!

(There are a lot of other names I'm leaving off that list that deserve to be there, but I'll wait for public opinion to turn.)
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Re: Movie Thread: The Dissection Room

Postby FloorMat116 » Wed May 31, 2017 11:05 pm

At long last, a brand new HD restoration of THE LOST WORLD (1925) has a blu-ray release date!
Flicker Alley, Lobster Films, and Blackhawk Films® are thrilled to present the world-premiere Blu-ray edition of Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Lost World, the most complete version of the film ever released. This visually stunning 2K restoration, accomplished by Lobster Films, features newly-discovered scenes and special effect sequences, incorporating almost all original elements from archives and collections around the world. Renowned silent film composer Robert Israel contributes a new and ambitious score, performed by a full orchestra in 2016.

This edition is dedicated to David Shepard, and to the collectors, archives, and passionate cinema lovers, who help preserve films for future generations.

Flicker Alley has released a preview clip showcasing the beautiful new restoration, revealing that a particular scene was originally produced in an early COLOR technique.
https://vimeo.com/219031714

The blu-ray is available for pre-order for a September 12th release.
https://www.flickeralley.com/classic-movies/#!/The-Lost-World-Deluxe-Blu-ray-Edition/p/85024400/category=20414531
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Re: Movie Thread: The Dissection Room

Postby Garrett Gilchrist » Thu Jun 01, 2017 4:35 pm

Dino-mite!
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Re: Movie Thread: The Dissection Room

Postby Garrett Gilchrist » Mon Jun 05, 2017 1:32 am

I'm not 100% convinced Gal Gadot is Wonder Woman, but I'm very certain that Patty Jenkins is. DC handed her a ruined franchise and she pulled off a miracle. Jenkins' last film was Monster, for which Charlize Theron won the Oscar as Best Actress. The fact that Jenkins otherwise hasn't made a movie since 2003 is a crime and shows how Hollywood doesn't value women. This is the first DC movie of any kind that's actually on par with Marvel's recent work. It's hard not to imagine a world where a director of Jenkins' caliber was given the keys to DC's characters earlier.

The previous DCEU films, Man of Steel and Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice are, in my opinion, unwatchable and the worst film I've ever watched, respectively. Patty Jenkins knew she had to do better. She knew that regardless of what she'd been handed here, she couldn't screw it up. It had to be not only good but great, and it is.

Comparisons to Captain America: The First Avenger are inevitable, but that's not a bad thing. Especially since it's hard to say which is the better film. The action sequences dazzle, like a higher quality version of anything Zack Snyder ever did. I wonder if Snyder had a strong hand in any of that, as he was still on board as producer and this sort of razzle-dazzle action sure works better here without the dark-n-gritty macho posturing of Snyder's films. Indeed this film makes Batman V Superman a better film by its existence. The problem with that movie (and Man of Steel) was Snyder's Ayn Randian hatred of the entire concept of heroism and altruism. His heroes are not heroes. They refuse to be. They're dark and macho and mean and conflicted, and they hate being what they're supposed to be. Wonder Woman was a highlight of that film, as she was simply, straightforwardly, a superhero without any apparent baggage. She seemed to come out of a different, better film, and we now see that's literally true. Just how much better is the surprising part.

Any complaints I have are things which were probably out of Patty Jenkins' control. Gal Gadot is good enough as Wonder Woman, but still sticks out as odd casting. The Israeli actress speaks with a thick accent and is model-pretty in a waiflike way - maybe not the first choice for an action hero in an American film. Jenkins works around it by giving almost everyone in the film a (non-American) accent, so Gadot is not out of place. The island of Themiscyra, home of the Amazons, is the former home of Greek gods and goddesses, and the Amazons are patterned after Greco-Roman warriors, so why shouldn't they have Greek-ish accents as well?

It often feels like the film is taking place around Gadot rather than because of her, like the film is working extra hard. Then again, it's been said that film acting is about doing as little as possible, and if Keanu Reeves can get away with it I won't dock Gadot any points here. There was a behind the scenes clip from Batman V Superman where Gadot smiles and spins around the way Lynda Carter did, and seemed to be having fun. We didn't get to see anyone having fun, smiling and being charming in that film, but we get that here. Patty Jenkins has said that she would personally have cast an "American girl" but loved working with Gadot.

This film's origin for Wonder Woman disappoints a little, because it's still a male-driven story, when it would have been easy to exclude men from it entirely. Themiscyra is entirely populated by women, but her mother Hippolyta tells her, as a child, that she was sculpted out of clay and brought to life by Zeus. She tells a tale of male gods. Zeus is depicted as good (a real stretch) and Ares as evil (another stretch). We find out later that this wasn't the whole truth, but it still grounds even the beginning of the film in a certain maleness. The action sequences with these warrior women are terrific right out of the gate, and grounded by Robin Wright and Connie Nielsen - the sort of casting which suggests the director got her first choices for everything.

This bunch are certainly warriors, fighting with swords and shields and bow and arrow on horseback. It's kind of a shame that Wonder Woman, a nearly invulnerable superheroine, has to fight with a sword and shield, and again a very masculine choice on how to portray her. But that's how she currently is in the comics and it's hard to argue with all the exciting action we get onscreen because of it.

Star Trek's Chris Pine is all American charm as Steve Trevor, and for a film about Wonder Woman he's asked to carry a lot of the weight. He is, in Marvel terms, the Sharon Carter and the Bucky Barnes of this movie. It's clear that if Diana hadn't shown up he would be the hero of the film. He's absolutely delightful (and a very rare Famous Chris that Marvel hasn't already cast), but it's very telling that this film felt the need for a strong male lead when the Zack Snyder films gave Lois Lane nothing to do except be a damsel in distress. As comic writer Gail Simone pointed out, the only live action Superman projects that ever worked were love stories.

The desaturated greys and dark grittiness of a Zack Snyder film are still present here, although at least some of the film is in color, and very effectively at that.

Diana's friend Etta Candy is here played by Lucy Davis, Dawn from the original The Office. She's made to look just chubby enough to fit the character, and clearly has what it takes to be a great and funny supporting character. In her brief scenes she's charming and funny. I wanted to see a lot more of her but she's given very little to do here. She's not around long enough to get a sense of friendship between her and Diana.

I'm not sure how this film would portray friendship anyway, as Diana is usually a stoic outsider here. There were a lot of scenes where I'd expect her to hug someone, like when saying goodbye to her mother or celebrating the end of the war. Hugs didn't happen. She's not without warmth and emotion - she smiles plenty, and at one point she cries. But she's not too far from being The Terminator.

Then again, Wonder Woman being an outsider, and one who doesn't talk too much, pays off throughout the film. She comes to World War I as an observer, shocked at what the world of Man is really like. Through her eyes we experience how society here is run by men only, and how it would force her into a box she can't fit into - literally in the case of restrictive clothing she "can't fight in." She doesn't give a long speech about her reaction to all this (though she does briefly lose her temper at some military leaders), but a speech might not have worked and she doesn't need to. We know that to her all of this is absurd, and also that she doesn't let it affect her. She just goes on being exactly who she is. We also see how the madness and pain of the war affects her. She is compassionate. She sees people dying and suffering, and she wants to end the war. And, yes, Steve Trevor plays a part in showing her who she is - that she is all about forgiveness and love. She is about ending this war.

So, even if we got there in a backwards kind of way, this is a film about exactly what Wonder Woman is about. She's about ending war. She knows that humanity is flawed but she forgives. She loves. She fights for peace.

This is the first DC film ever that achieves what Marvel's been achieving with every film. And it's actually about something.

I won't say this is a perfect film, but I will say that under the circumstances, and given what Batman V Superman already established, Patty Jenkins did a virtually perfect job directing it. And that is wonderful.
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Re: Movie Thread: The Dissection Room

Postby Garrett Gilchrist » Sun Jul 02, 2017 9:26 pm

(A discussion on Twitter of Tim Burton, compared to David Lynch. These are all Twitter sized thoughts that repeat themselves a bit.)

Tim Burton has his own style & worked with a lot of great visual stylists, but anything he had to say he said in the 90s. Hot Topic Goth Grandpa.

Burton has been too content to become a parody of himself. There was a time when his stuff was kinky and subversive compared to Hollywood usual.

Burton's best and most Burtony movie, Nightmare, wasn't directed by him. Edward Scissorhands was 1990. A lot of newer Burton is astonishingly boring, in concept and execution. Somehow in a distinguished career since to the early 80s Tim Burton never earned the right to take himself seriously. Gets very dull when he does.

Burton was so influential and so style over substance that he's obsolete now if he's just gonna do the obvious. Others can do the exact same. James Bobin and Henry Selick have literally been hired to direct "Tim Burton" movies and no one knew the difference. That's a big red flag. You shouldn't be able to say "Tim Burton does Alice In Wonderland/Sweeney Todd" and already know exactly what that'd look like and the cast.

Occasionally Burton gets his mojo back, but his next project is apparently Disney's Dumbo, and I'm already throwing up if it is what I think.

I always saw Burton as basically a cartoonist, like Terry Gilliam. Barry Sonnenfeld actually does the same sort of thing, often better? Watching Sonnenfeld's Lemony Snicket, that 60s Vincent Price/Addams Family schtick doesn't play as well when we're not suburban and uberrich.

Burton is kinky dark Halloween candy funtimes at best, when we're dealing with actual fear over here.

Burton trying to freak out the normies with his superdark ideas straight from a Rankin Bass Christmas special. Works when he's aware of that

Also to like most of Burton's made you need a high tolerance for Johnny Depp, which ....... welp.

Burton picked Depp as his avatar, who is just this white blank canvas. Blank slate. Johnny Depp is all makeup, putting on a show. He's a clown painting.

David Lynch's avatars are 1950s-y young guys who're so normal they're weird.

I don't think David Lynch thinks of himself as dark. It's not like a hairstyle for him. He's trying to make you feel something.

The white middle class suburbia Burton was trying to Halloween out doesn't exist for a lot of us now. Lynch's films are about that suburbia but he actually digs into its darkness and hope.

In Blue Velvet and elsewhere you really feel the dark side of what Lynch's suburban childhood would have been, a whole generation who had gone to war and come back with anger and PTSD and violence in their hearts that they didn't know what to do with, while maintaining a happy and prosperous exterior. And it's never just dark, there's always this hopeful, youthful side to it, and a wider view of the universe and how strange our lives really are.

Burton's cartoon portrayals of his own suburban childhood don't dig much deeper than "What if it was Halloween all the time?" Very Munsters. In Burton's better work, he does really take that Halloweeny type stuff seriously and enjoy it as an aesthetic and way of life. That's very likeable, to a point.

Burton's movies, like the suburbia they sprang from, are all super white. So are Lynch's. But Burton's movies are white people in white makeup wearing colorless clothes in a black and white world. Either way you see the effect that the media and socialization they consumed as kids informed them and stuck with them.

I wasn't thinking Burton ripped off Lynch, but uhhhhh check out the sandworms in Beetlejuice and Nightmare.

Think Burton saw Lynch's Dune?
https://iamnotlefthandedeither.files.wo ... g_1271.jpg

That looks like a Pee Wee's Playhouse version of Lynch's film, which sounds about right. Burton's take on Pee Wee Herman was of course wonderful.

Burton, even at his best, is making cartoons. That's not a criticism. Lynch is live action, film.

Burton worked with the best, and a similarly goth-y style doesn't require him ... . .. .

David Lynch could direct a movie about an old man riding a lawnmower, with none of his "weirdness," and still make a great film that's absolutely "David Lynch" and bears a lot of discussion and thought. He can make movies that aren't consciously "weird" and still have something to say about America.

The appeal of David Lynch's films is his unique point of view on the apparently ordinary, and the emotions he feels and passes on to you.

David Lynch's work is very clearly made by a white man born in the 40s, but my god, he's the only true lucid dreamer our cinema has got. We need more of that.

I will say that even having made one great film means a director is worthy of respect, and Tim Burton admittedly made a bunch of great films. A whole career's worth of greatness by any director's standard. Repeating himself with diminishing returns took the bloom off of that. When you see he's capable of making unwatchable trash in the exact same style, it's easy to forget the good stuff, or look at it in a less favorable light.

Compared to "Nightmare Before Christmas," there was no real passion or intensity to anything in Corpse Bride. Not much more to it than the "Vincent"-era Tim Burton visual look.

And a 2005 film having the same aesthetic as a 1982 film by the same director doesn't show much creative growth. You could say that about a lot of artists/filmmakers, but it means that you didn't actually need Tim Burton there in order to create a film with this same visual style. It was already established pretty well previously. See also: Frankenweenie, the 2012 animated remake. So the audience is fatigued because the director has been doing roughly the same thing for 35 years at this point, even remaking and sequelizing certain films.
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Re: Movie Thread: The Dissection Room

Postby JustinHoskie » Fri Jul 14, 2017 1:08 pm

"Howard Ashman was the song writer and creative force behind Little Shop of Horrors and some of the greatest hits of the Disney Animation Renaissance: The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast and Aladdin. Oscar nominated film maker Don Hahn explore's Ashman's life and work in this follow up to his benchmark documentary Waking Sleeping Beauty."

https://youtu.be/l70W1cYZeRA
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Re: Movie Thread: The Dissection Room

Postby filmfan94 » Sun Jul 16, 2017 7:43 pm

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Re: Movie Thread: The Dissection Room

Postby Garrett Gilchrist » Sun Jul 16, 2017 8:52 pm

Spider-Man Homecoming: Marvel does it again, of course. Spidey may be in his seventh big-screen outing (eighth if we count the 1977 film), but this feels fresh and new in every way that the 2012 film didn't.

Spider-Man is Marvel's most popular character, and Sam Raimi's quirky 2002 film was an instant classic and the first big superhero success of the CGI era. It laid the groundwork for a lot of what Marvel is doing now.

So it's a bit of a cosmic joke that Spider-Man is a young newcomer to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, being mentored at a distance by Robert Downey Jr's Iron Man, who is more than thirty years his senior. Iron Man was a less popular character, but Jon Favreau's great 2008 film set the stage for Marvel's unprecedented success in movies. Sixteen films later, Spider-Man is the kid playing catchup in a high-tech world that Tony Stark built, and we feel that throughout.

Despite the irony of the situation, the dynamic works because Spider-Man has always been an underdog. Tony Stark is a billionaire war criminal with PTSD. Peter Parker is a broke science nerd struggling to get by in life, while his battles as a superhero constantly threaten to ruin his life and the lives of everyone he cares about. Casting Peter Parker as a teenager trying in vain to prove himself to the Avengers absolutely worked in the Civil War film, and it absolutely works here.

It also shows us another side of the character, which is very true to how he's always been in the comics, but hasn't been shown onscreen before. Tobey Maguire was about 26 in the first Spider-Man, typical for Hollywood, where adults play high school students. Both Tobey and Andrew Garfield look like old men next to 20-year old Tom Holland, who's supposed to be 15 or 16 here. Holland and his whole supporting cast are much more believable as high school children. 16 year old Angourie Rice has a small part as Betty Brant, and looks like a baby compared to Elizabeth Banks playing the same part. With his high-pitched voice, Tom Holland comes off like Michael J. Fox playing Marty McFly. Not a bad thing.

It's a diverse cast, less white than previous Spidey films and feeling more realistic, more high school and less 1960s because of it. We loved the corny, 60s throwback quality of the Sam Raimi films, but Homecoming succeeds in a more 2017 way. Laura Harrier plays Peter's crush, Liz Allan. Tony Revolori plays Flash Thompson as a bully, but also a fellow nerd rather than a sports jock. Which is frankly strange. Zendaya steals every scene she's in as Michelle, or MJ, possibly this film's version of Mary Jane Watson. She's consistently funny in a subtle way, as a scruffy nerd with a sense of social justice, and a casual punkish cool to how she's dressed.

Jacob Batalon is great as Peter Parker's best friend Ned Leeds, a name taken from the comics but portrayed here as very similar to Ganke, Korean best friend of the Ultimate Spider-Man, Miles Morales. At times it seems like they intended to make a Miles Morales movie, but put Peter Parker in it instead. Morales has generally been portrayed as very young. And Donald Glover, who inspired and voiced the Morales character, turns up as Morales' uncle, Aaron Davis AKA The Prowler. In a weirdly underplayed scene, Davis tells Parker he needs to get "better at this," and mentions his nephew (Miles).

The film is fast-paced and there are a lot of characters you only see briefly, and which leave you wanting more.

Minor Spider-Man characters are here in abundance. Versions of The Shocker and Tinkerer are henchmen to Michael Keaton's Vulture. Michael Mando (from Better Call Saul) turns up very briefly as the Scorpion. There's a lot that's being set up here for future films, and we'll just have to trust Marvel on that.

That hasn't always worked out for superhero films. Sam Raimi's films set up Dylan Baker as the Lizard, and Bruce Campbell, who had played various parts, would have turned up as Mysterio. Raimi never made that film, as he clashed with Sony over Spider-Man 3. Raimi wanted Ben Kingsley as The Vulture, but Sony inisted on Venom. The film was overstuffed with villains and Raimi's heart wasn't in it, leading to some bizarre, uniquely Sam Raimi scenes. Spider-Man, as a character, has a reputation for having a quirky sense of humor. That's not actually true in Raimi's films, but Raimi himself is such a peculiar and quirky director that that quality came through in the films themselves.

In 2012 we got to see what Sony's plan for Spidey really was. They held onto the rights even as Marvel was establishing the MCU. Directed by Marc Webb and starring Andrew Garfield, the two "Amazing Spider-Man" films were, to my eyes, deeply boring. The scenes just sit there. There is definitely an attempt to make Spider-Man, as a character, funny. This doesn't work at all because the film itself just goes through the motions, and the editing is strangely flat.

The 2012 film also shows us Spider-Man's origins, and this can't help but feel like a worse version of the 2002 Sam Raimi film. It's showing us something we've seen before.

It is a very smart decision that Spider-Man Homecoming skips the origin entirely, even though it's showing us the youngest Spider-Man yet. We've seen it all before, and we only want to see it again to tick off the boxes and go through the motions. There's a new animated Spider-Man series to tie-in with Homecoming and it seems to be using the Sam Raimi origin, complete with Bonesaw McGraw. Ain't that something?

The Amazing Spider-Man 2 tried to set up future villains. It gave us Paul Giamatti as The Rhino for about five minutes, which is deeply embarrassing. And it gave us Felicity Jones (later star of Rogue One) as Felicia Hardy/The Black Cat. You probably forgot all that.

The difference with Marvel is that they keep making these films, and the stuff they set up does tend to pay off later. For about ten years now it's been okay to trust Marvel.

(Homecoming also throws in a female extra with silver hair, which I guarantee they won't follow up on with the same actress. It's like how the first X-Men films threw in characters they'd recast later.)

The 2012 film is very long, and feels very long, but has very purposely deleted any scenes which give any character development to Curt Connors, AKA the Lizard, now played by Rhys Ifans. It's a baffling decision since he's intended as a sympathetic character and is familiar from the Raimi films. "Amazing" makes him nothing but a bad guy.

Compare that to The Vulture. Marvel has a reputation for weak villains, but there are an increasing amount of exceptions to the rule. Spider-Man: Homecoming spends a lot of time fleshing out Adrian Toomes, The Vulture. His motivations are completely understandable throughout. He's a working-class father just trying to get ahead. We even understand his grudge against Tony Stark, and against Spider-Man.

Toomes was a contractor cleaning up after the destruction caused in the first Avengers film. He bought trucks and equipment planning for a big payday, until he was kicked off the site by Tony Stark - or more personally by Anne Marie Hoag (Tyne Daly) of Damage Control. He's in massive debt now, and in massive trouble. But he's still got some alien tech from the site, and doesn't intend to return it.

We flash forward eight years, and that should make all of us feel old, and impressed by how long Marvel has been pulling this off. You'll also feel old because in the comics, both The Vulture and Peter's Aunt May are visibly very elderly. Here they're played by Michael Keaton and Marisa Tomei, big stars from the 90s who we've missed lately.

This is Keaton in full villain mode, Beetlejuice-style lending an extra edge to everything he does. I've missed seeing Keaton doing this. We even like him, though we know he's the bad guy. Toomes is a smart guy who's built himself a real high-tech business, even if it's an evil operation that's putting absurdly dangerous alien tech in the hands of street criminals. At one point he kills one of his henchmen. Apparently he'd only intended to scare him, and grabbed the wrong gun. While Toomes ends up as a killer, nothing he does is unmotivated, and he's easily up there with the best villains Marvel's ever had.

Like Peter, The Vulture is an underdog. He mirrors Peter Parker's usual struggles with money. The young Peter takes the train to get around. He finds it hard to balance school and friends with his superhero "internship."

And despite an impressive debut in Civil War, Tony Stark (or rather Happy Hogan) isn't even returning his text messages. Some have argued that Tony is a villain in this movie. He seems distracted, neglectful. Tony gave Peter a high-tech Spidey suit in Civil War, and his fingerprints are all over the situation Peter finds himself in now, but he's not giving Peter the guidance he wants and needs. To an extent, Tony is testing Peter. He's built a ton of tech into the suit that Peter isn't supposed to know about yet. He's watching Peter from afar. But that excuse only goes so far, when Peter really needs his help.

It's understandable, to an extent. Despite his powers, Peter is just a teenager, and not ready to be an Avenger. And that's what being a teenager usually feels like - like you're ready to be an adult, and you don't fully understand how you're not. It's more glaringly obvious from the other side. An adult looks at a teenager and sees a child. But also a child who is bursting with power and energy. You can be scared of that and tell the kid to calm down and put that power back in its bottle. Or you can lend guidance. Either way it's going to take a teenager time to learn for him or herself how to become an adult.

Robert Downey Jr. never feels like much more than a Special Guest Star here. In every scene, it feels like they got him in for a quick bit of filming that he didn't take very seriously. That made sense to me at first. But he's actually in a lot of scenes. He keeps coming back. Then you realize, that's just the character. Tony doesn't know what to do with Spider-Man. He gets angry at Peter, at how he can't control Peter. He's disappointed in Peter, and finally disappointed in himself for not getting this right. By the end, Tony plays it cool, like it was all just a test. It wasn't, though. Tony wasn't there, and in his absence Peter learned a lot about himself.

Baffling, but appropriate for a film that's not about Tony Stark. Really, it's a film about people living in the mess that Tony Stark left behind. And, on a meta level, doing justice to the Spider-Man character from the comics in a world built around RDJ's Iron Man and The Avengers.

Chris Evans' Captain America makes some jokey cameos on videos kids are forced to watch in high school. Hannibal Burress turns up as the gym teacher, just barely funny in such a brief role.

It's remarkable that all these years of Marvel films have been one big story, and we feel that here more than ever.

In the 2002 film, the old 60s Spider-Man theme was used as a joke, as an easter egg for longtime fans. Here, Michael Giacchino arranges a lush, full-orchestra version over the Marvel logo, which says a lot about how much fun Marvel films are having taking all this silly stuff seriously. And why not? The actual heroic themes used for Spider-Man and The Avengers aren't as memorable as just arranging the old 60s Spidey theme in this way. They must have been tempted to use it in the film proper.

If I may digress for a moment:

A filmmaker got very angry when I pointed out that the editing, in the more recent Superman 2 Michael Thau Donner Cut, often falls flat or seem amateurish, compared to the editing done at the time. The farewell between Superman and Lois at the Fortress of Solitude site is my favorite work Margot Kidder did in the Superman films, and it always worked in the TV cut, but isn't the same in Thau's cut, somehow. You suddenly notice the music hanging too thick over the scene, and it's just not cut quite right.

I've criticized the Amazing Spider-Man films for editing and sound mixing which just falls flat, and for awhile I had the same trouble with Spider-Man Homecoming. Flat editing and sound mixing can be hard to pinpoint. A film lives or dies in its editing and thousands of decisions go into how to present every shot.

I felt the music hanging very thick over an early scene with Michael Keaton as The Vulture, where he says that the world is changing, and that his crew have to change with it. The cutting is very fast, early on in this film. Too fast, I felt. A lot of these scenes are already familiar, since we've seen so many trailers for this film.

In the trailers, Spidey is fighting some crooks in Avengers masks who are robbing an ATM. He says, "Wait a minute, you guys aren't the real Avengers. I can tell, Hulk gives it away." That line isn't in the final film. I'd say this is something new for Spidey trailers, but the first Sam Raimi film had an entire trailer involving the World Trade center towers, which didn't make it to the final film for the most tragic and obvious reasons.

It's noticeable that the final film uses different takes, and some scenes feel different than I expected.

I felt that with Ned Leeds in a hotel room saying to Peter "But you are a kid." And with Zendaya's last scene as Michelle/MJ, where she asks Peter, "What are you hiding, Peter?" It's a very Sam Raimi Spidey moment, but turns out to be a joke. She says "I'm just kidding, I don't care, bye." It's played off very casually, not acting-y. And isn't it nice that MJ is the funny one? Anyway, turns out she does care about what Peter is doing, more than she realizes. Which is predictably acting-y.

For a big part of its runtime it seems like Spider-Man: Homecoming is in a real rush, and that robs some scenes of their power. The script, however, is clever and witty and works, so a lot is forgiveable. They've also used the Guardians of the Galaxy trick of licensing older pop and rock and punk songs, like The Ramones doing "Blitzkreig Bop." That works no matter how old or young you are.

What the film does spend its time on is CGI action setpieces. No surprise from a Marvel film but it's terrific that the big setpieces on the Staten Island Ferry or at the Washington Monument set Spidey up as an underdog pushed past his limits. It's never easy for Peter and he pushes himself above and beyond. That's the character, and that's good storytelling.

We get into territory that's legitimately stupid with the final showdown between Toomes and Parker on top of a treasure-filled Stark Industries jet. They fight while holding on to and falling off of a jet that's speeding through the air and then crashing. The physics of that don't make any sense even for a superhero film. Fighting on board a crashing jet, I can understand. Fighting on top of a speeding truck, fine. This was just too much for me, and it's the finale. Thankfully the character stuff is what's actually important. We see clearly as Peter Parker defines himself as a person, in how he relates to Toomes, and finally to Tony Stark.

I think I was going to mention something else that didn't work, but I've already forgotten.

But this is Spider-Man, more than any previous big screen take on the character. It seems strange to say that when we've already had a bunch of previous films, more of which were excellent. But as usual Marvel has gotten to the core of what's most important about the character, and delivered it in a film that is not only entertaining and fun but serves as a manifesto for understanding who this hero is.

Sony has plans for more unrelated films starring Spider-Man supporting characters. I hope that none of that happens. (Unless it's Emma Stone as Spider-Gwen.)

I would also gladly bribe Marvel to bring back, from the Raimi films, JK Simmons and Bruce Campbell. That would probably never happen, but if Marvel wants my $20, wink wink.

Meanwhile, coming in February from Marvel: Black Panther. Already a hit from his appearance in Civil War, and coming from popular Creed director Ryan Coogler, with an all-star cast.

The Avengers will return in Infinity War.
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Re: Movie Thread: The Dissection Room

Postby filmfan94 » Fri Aug 18, 2017 10:23 am

It's funny how something can be considered lost for years and then turn up where it should have been in the first place. This has happened with the original camera negative for The Philadelphia Story (which will be the source for Criterion's upcoming restoration of the film). Per Robert Harris on HTF:

The original camera negative of TPS was reportedly lost decades ago, in the GEH nitrate fire. There have been no quality fine grains in service.

Not long ago, apparently during a new inventory, it was discovered that the OCN did survive.

WB/Criterion's 4k scan of that element was the first time it has seen the light of day in over half a century.

The new release, courtesy of WB, is a true cause for celebration.


Something similar happened with the original recordings of Basil Poledouris' scores for the Conan films. The tapes were thought lost for years until it was found a few years ago that they were right there in the Universal vault the whole time.
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Re: Movie Thread: The Dissection Room

Postby filmfan94 » Sun Aug 20, 2017 2:13 pm

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