Author Topic: Battle: Los Angeles  (Read 8917 times)

darren bergstein

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #20 on: March 11, 2011, 11:34:31 AM »
...(The Fountain, Pan's Labyrinth, Coen brothers or Pixar stuff)...

Okay, so here we go with opinions, informed or otherwise: :)

Absolutely loved both The Fountain & Pan's Labyrinth (again, two more superb SF/fantasy films of recent vintage; thanks for reminding me, Mike). Too bad del Toro dropped out of The Hobbit - he might have really brought an even more expansive mindfuck psychedelia to the LOTR series.

Ditto Pixar & the Coen Bros., *especially* the Coen Bros. Fargo, Raising Arizona, No Country..., Blood Simple, and, of course, The Big Lebowski (a regular staple in this household)...as far as I'm concerned, total, stone-cold classics.

We don't seem to have the time to get to theaters to see films much anymore (used to see at least 4-6, maybe more, films a month - now it's more like 4 a year), let alone even watch them on PPV, but what I have seen lately has been fairly good (we're definitely more selective); thoroughly enjoyed The King's Speech, for example. Sunday might take us to The Adjustment Bureau, but I've heard mixed things about that one, too (how many ways can Hollywood screw up Philip K. Dick? Although I will be *very* curious to see what they do with his Ubik, one of my fave SF novels ever; supposedly Michel Gondry's attached to direct it, so I remain very optimistic...a different discussion/thread entirely :) ). Otherwise, as with much of what H-wood now churns out, they ain't a whole helluvalot out there of interest...
« Last Edit: March 11, 2011, 11:36:53 AM by darren bergstein »
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mgriffin

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #21 on: March 11, 2011, 12:09:32 PM »
PK Dick seems to have more bad adaptations of his work than anybody else lately. I thought Blade Runner made up for just about all the rest, though. Scanner Darkly was very good and Total Recall had its moments.

Lena and I almost never get out to the movie theater now. Our home theater is a better viewing experience (1080p wall-sized projection FTW) than many theaters and has lots of other advantages. Not just the lack of rude d-bags talking on their cell phones, but access to food and drink, not to mention the mighty pause button!
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Dave Michuda

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #22 on: March 11, 2011, 12:19:18 PM »
When I saw "The Fountain, Pan's Labyrinth, Coen brothers or Pixar stuff" I just had to add myself as a HUGE fan of those movies.

Darren, I too just saw The King's Speech & loved it.  Especially interesting to see after having just watched The Social Network, which I liked but not nearly as much as King's Speech.

Bill Binkelman

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #23 on: March 11, 2011, 01:44:28 PM »
I believe that movies, maybe more than any other medium, are affected by what people bring to the table in the way of both expectations and "needs." Many folks on opinion boards, newsgroups, etc. harp on the notion that movies are only for "entertainment" and as long as one is entertained, that is enough...Of course, entertainment itself is subjective, too, but I think their theory is that a movie can suck (art-wise) and yet entertain. Sadly, some of these folks also think that any artistic film sucks simply because it is artistic. I'll admit that I enjoy popcorn flicks as much as art flicks, e.g. I own copies of both The Fountain (LOVE the soundtrack and bought it the same day I saw the film) and crap like Underworld and the updated version of The Italian Job. Sometimes I just like to park my brain and watch bad guys get the crap kicked out of them and shit get blown up real good. Other times, I want to be pushed and have my intellect really pummelled by a WTF movie like The Fountain. Not everyone has this duality when it comes to their taste in films, which is not meant to infer I'm better than those folks, just stating a difference.

I also agree that some people simply cannot enjoy a film because of subject matter. Kathryn, who really loves movies, HATES almost all science fiction...but she loved LOTR and Narnia. Go figure.

For me, the only genre/type of film I hate enough to rarely ever watch despite how EVERYONE, even critics seem to love, are these recent silly comedies by folks like the Farrellys and crap like Superbad, etc. I tried watching Superbad and lasted 10 minutes. I was shocked at how, IMO, offensive it is and I hardly EVER get offended at anything in a movie. I would rather rewatch a cult film like the original Vanishing Point than something like Anchorman or just about any comedy along those lines. And I love comedies...when they are funny (haha...subjective taste joke  ::) ).

For every person who considers 2001 to be a nonsensical acid-fueled pretentious bunch of crap, there is a person who thinks The Rock is the nadir of cinema (I happen to like both of them, although obviously for different reasons). I can understand why seem people think 2001 is pretentious and I also can understand how a Michael Bay fillm is usually considered to be as brain-dead as Governor Walker of Wisconsin. For me, I don't watch The Rock for anything but to see Sean Connery kick ass and Ed Harris do his usual madman schtick. Sometimes I want a greasy cheeseburger and sometimes I want haute cuisine.

Bringing it back to Battle: Los Angeles, I am seeing it (hopefully this weekend) because (a) I like Aaron Eckhart (hell, he even made The Core watchable) and (b) to me, it looks enough like Blackhawk Down, which I loved, to make it worthwhile investing 2 hours and 6 bucks (matinee prices) and (c) hey. it's gotta be better than the current version of "V" and if I'm stupid enough to watch that every week - and I am - I may as well give this a shot.

PS Thanks to everyone who ha scontributed on this topic as I am REALLY enjoying this discussion...
May the odds be ever in your favor.

darren bergstein

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #24 on: March 11, 2011, 02:21:08 PM »
Well, be curious to see what you think, Bill.

Oh, and full disclosure - if time permits next week, I intend to see BLA, too.

BTW: completely forgot about The Social Network, which was utterly brilliant - both that & The King's Speech are two of last year's best films, at least as far as non-indie, 'big' Hollywood films go...great Reznor soundtrack, too, very electronic & most apposite the film's subject matter but it worked very well. I actually didn't think David Fincher had it in him, as I completely *loathed* Seven and didn't care much for Alien III (never saw all of Panic Room). However, Zodiac, which was quite good, proved he could deliver the goods, so the artistic & commercial success of TSN now seems justified.
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mgriffin

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #25 on: March 11, 2011, 02:24:19 PM »
Differing tastes are easy enough to understand, and sort of... not that interesting. "To each his own" is perfectly nice and true and enlightened-sounding, but sort of boring.

Slightly more interesting is those otherwise-intelligent people who inexplicably would rather see Armageddon or Pearl Harbor or Waterworld than Moon or Saving Private Ryan or Pan's Labyrinth (if we're talking a sf movie, a recent war movie, or a fantasy, respectively). Some people would just rather see a lighthearted and shallow story as opposed to one that makes them think. That's OK.

What I find more interesting is people who see something almost universally regarded as brilliant and think it just flat-out sucks. I totally get why some people might not like Holy Mountain or Mulholland Drive or Synecdoche New York. But people who walk out at the beginning of Dr. Strangelove, or say Fargo was "annoying," or Annie Hall was "silly" I sincerely find fascinating. Some of them are just dumb, it's true, but I've known enough intelligent and likable people who very strongly dismiss a number of very great works of art, so I know it's not just a lowbrow/highbrow thing.
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Bill Binkelman

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #26 on: March 11, 2011, 03:39:07 PM »
Well, Mike, I don't know if I can say I'd "rather" see one over the other, as much as it's influenced by my mood at the time I am wanting to see a movie. FTR, I love Dr. Strangelove, Annie Hall, and Fargo...also Saving Private Ryan. I couldn't really get into Pan's Labyrinth but understood the praise for it...it just didn't reach me emotionally. I don't know that I find it particularly interesting when "intelligent" folks don't like a certain kind of film, or even a particular singular film itself. Fargo seems to divide a lot of people. For me, I may be the only person who LOVED...I mean LOVED Se7en. (Sorry, Darren). I think it is a brilliant metaphor for the various reactions we as people have to the decaying conditions in urban America and I also think the visual horror of the story was also relatively restrained. But most people I know, if not all, are in agreement with Darren, i.e. they HATED it...I mean REALLY HATED IT. I also loved Ken Russell's universally panned Altered States.

I guess Kathryn's taste in movies has always surprised me. She can watch the Die Hard movies over and over and yet her taste in esoteric foreign films, especially some of the more depressing films to come from northern Europe (e.g. Sweden and Norway) certainly eclipses my love of those genres (and I am not a "sub-title hater").  Although, I had to chuckle when I recommended Dancer in the Dark to her and even SHE admitted it was a damn depressing film...I described Breaking the Waves to her and she passed on it...maybe she just isn't a Von Trier fan! ;)

Mike or Darren (or anyone), did you see Welcome to the Dollhouse, Your Friends and Neighbors, or Happiness? If so, what did you think of them? I admired each one, but damn, I could never watch any of the three a second time.
May the odds be ever in your favor.

mgriffin

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #27 on: March 11, 2011, 03:57:00 PM »
I love Todd Solondz but you're right -- I don't know how often I want to re-watch Happiness or Welcome to the Dollhouse.

Some of my favorite movies to watch over and over might be considered stupid by some people. Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai, Flash Gordon, Rocky Horror Picture Show, Clue... those are like comfort food to me.
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Bill Binkelman

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #28 on: March 11, 2011, 04:07:09 PM »
Yeah, that's a great term to use  to describe those kind of movies... "comfort food." I gotta remember that one.
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mgriffin

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #29 on: March 11, 2011, 04:31:28 PM »
I used to watch Buckaroo Banzai, Stripes, and Caddy Shack multiple times every month. Not as much lately.
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darren bergstein

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #30 on: March 11, 2011, 04:51:32 PM »
Mike or Darren (or anyone), did you see Welcome to the Dollhouse, Your Friends and Neighbors, or Happiness? If so, what did you think of them? I admired each one, but damn, I could never watch any of the three a second time.

I'm not a big Solondz enthusiast; I appreciate his style & approach, but certainly not in repetition.

There are a number of films that have that spark & resonate in their own right (and that I like & admire), but, possibly due to their subject matter (which is variable) I don't necessarily have a desire to see them in repetition. Some examples: Saving Private Ryan, Schindler's List, Notes from A Scandal, Quills, The Diving Bell & the Butterfly, etc.

Some of my favorite movies to watch over and over might be considered stupid by some people. Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai, Flash Gordon, Rocky Horror Picture Show, Clue... those are like comfort food to me.

I completely agree with you, Mike, and a pretty good way to put it. Examples of my own 'comfort food' films: Beverly Hills Cop, Night Shift, Real Genius, The Big Lebowski, Arthur, Manhattan Murder Mystery, Easy Money, The Insider...there's others.

Why does one particular film stir your soul/'comfort' you and another doesn't? Hard to say. I guess that's what makes horse races. :)
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Numina

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #31 on: March 11, 2011, 05:04:07 PM »
I feel sort of dumb because I've never heard of The Fountain or Dr. Strangelove... yet I can quote lines from Dumb and Dumber. Is there any hope for me?

Oh, I liked Pan's Labyrinth BTW. Also dig the Hell Boy flicks...  I like the Coen Bros stuff as well... I sort of have to considering I grew up in Fargo until I was 13 y.o.

mgriffin

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #32 on: March 11, 2011, 05:04:53 PM »
Night Shift used to be a big one for me too. My friends and my brother and I used to quote all kinds of lines from that movie, even some of the unfunny ones like, "Chuck, I'm wearing white."

The obvious quotable lines are "Hey kid, you like music?" and Billy Blaze's various notes to self, like "put the mayonnaise in the can with the tuna."

Shelley Long in her underpants. Just think about that for a second.
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mgriffin

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #33 on: March 11, 2011, 05:10:40 PM »
I feel sort of dumb because I've never heard of The Fountain or Dr. Strangelove... yet I can quote lines from Dumb and Dumber. Is there any hope for me?

Oh, I liked Pan's Labyrinth BTW. Also dig the Hell Boy flicks...  I like the Coen Bros stuff as well... I sort of have to considering I grew up in Fargo until I was 13 y.o.


Like several of us said above, nothing wrong with enjoying dumb movies. I think Dumb and Dumber is great, if I'm in the right mood for it. 40 Year Old Virgin, Napoleon Dynamite, same thing.

But yes, if you've never heard of Dr. Strangelove that means you're dumb.

 ;)
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Bill Binkelman

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #34 on: March 11, 2011, 06:50:03 PM »
Night Shift used to be a big one for me too. My friends and my brother and I used to quote all kinds of lines from that movie, even some of the unfunny ones like, "Chuck, I'm wearing white."

The obvious quotable lines are "Hey kid, you like music?" and Billy Blaze's various notes to self, like "put the mayonnaise in the can with the tuna."

Shelley Long in her underpants. Just think about that for a second.

"I'm an idea man, Chuck."

"Is this a great country or what?"

"How come we don't have TV, Chuck?"

"Love brokers! You and me, Chuck!"

"Call Star Kist."

Yeah, you could say Night Shift is one of my faves, too..and yes, I own that one too. Michael Keaton's second funniest film...after Beetlejuice, of course. "I've come for your daughter, Chuck."

I may have watch Night Shift tonight now...damn you, MG!
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darren bergstein

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #35 on: March 11, 2011, 07:14:30 PM »
Chuck (in jail): "What am I running for, cell president?"
Bill: "They have that?"

Bill: "Hey, Chuck, you want a Snickers?"
Chuck: "No."
Bill: It's not frozen because my refrigerator's broke."
Chuck: "I understand."

Oh, Night Shift...Ron Howard's home run right out of the starting gate...my father & I have been trading its lines for years.

Another to add to the 'comfort food' ('comfort film'?) list: True Colors, a *very* underrated John Cusack/James Spader drama whose premise & compressed politics are total nonsense, yet...I have just always loved the way the film plays out. Cool soundtrack, too - on the sort of muzaky-lite side (yikes!), but I dig it, regardless.
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Numina

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #36 on: March 11, 2011, 07:33:36 PM »
I'm paraphrasing:

Floyd: so what are the chances a guy like you and a girl like me gettng together?

Mary: not very good

Floyd: like one in a thousand?

Mary: more like one in a million.

Floyd: (with a smile) so you're saying there's a chance!

LNerell

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #37 on: March 12, 2011, 01:30:03 PM »
I probably won't go see this film as I do the battle: LA every day, its called the 405 freeway.  ;D :P :D
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einstein36

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #38 on: March 12, 2011, 10:59:15 PM »
Well....I just braved this movie and yet again, I am disappointed in a movie called Sci-Fi....the whole feel of the movie felt like saving private ryan with nothing but action, action, guns, and a little bit of aliens thrown in the mix to call it a sci-fi movie...
yet again, just like skyline, they did not really explain why they were here, yes, maybe they did, but through newscasts, about using our water resources and to conquer us..blah blah blah.....
I can not believe the drivel that hollywood keeps pumping out of so called sci-fi movies...esp enough with the shake camera moves....gets old and drives me nuts....:)

okay...NEXT....hahahaha
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Dave Michuda

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Re: Battle: Los Angeles
« Reply #39 on: March 13, 2011, 10:34:51 AM »
Now this looks like it could be some good sci-fi...
Super8


Well maybe not hard science fiction or anything ground breaking but it sure looks fun.  So reminiscent of stuff like Close Encounters & E.T.  I can't wait for this one.