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Thread: Rate Any Movie You Saw Today << spoiler alert >>

  1. #601

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    "Everyone Goes To Rick's"

    I have to give an honorable mention to "Casablanca", my absolute favorite movie and a powerful piece of cinema history that has been the Numero Uno on my personal top 10 list since I can remember.
    I watched it again last week, and for the thousandth time I felt blessed to have such a classic work of art presented in it's elegance yet again. The story, the settings, the direction, the actors and the unforgettable dialogue combine to make it the most compelling motion picture yet devised. And the lighting and early cinematography, the way it creates a Casablanca of the mind, is brilliant and clever. It's got to be the artistic pinnacle for a black and white movie. It would never work in color.
    I never get tired of re-watching it.

    The first few times I watched it, many,many movies ago, I saw it as a good-bad war movie-- but then I saw the love story and the political angles tie themselves together and I was swept into it forever. Here, the Nazis are REALLY bad Germans, mean, evil and arrogant, and the doomed romance between Rick and Ilsa is believable, tragic lovers who meet again by chance and discover their nobility. People gamble with their money and their lives, some get snatched off the street and disappear; spies and smugglers die with their secrets. Everything is black and white, good and bad-- the ideal yin/yang of the World War II years in Europe and N Africa.
    The metaphors of the time--war, fear, economics, greed, Nazis-- appear with consistency.

    --I cannot listen to France's National Anthem without seeing the defiant barroom chorus rise to their feet, about halfway through the movie. And I learned everything I ever needed to know about Vichy Water and the Free French from the film's final scenes. When I broke it off with my wife, my final words to her were ..." Baby, I'm no good at being noble, but it's easy to see that the problems of two little people don't amount to a hill of beans..."etc.

    The setting, Casablanca's crouded souk, is hot, exotic and dangerous, filled with desperate refugees from the war; everybody in town is corrupt and Nazis of high rank are actively hunting down and killing their enemies. No one is to be trusted except for the piano player. What a town!!
    The furtive, foggy Casablanca nights are streaked with the glow from the airport beacon, something both welcomed and feared. It's a sudden moment of moving light and shadow that reappears a lot throughout the movie and sets some strange moods as it passes. And Bogart NEVER says "Play it again, Sam" even once in this film. This I know.
    ( Also, "Everyone Goes To Rick's" was the original title of the movie.)

    "Casablanca" may be the definition of the "perfect" movie. Nothing like it has ever been done since. For me, anyway, it will forever be at the top of the list.
    Last edited by Hof; March 15th, 2012 at 06:35 PM.

  2. #602

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    Lofter--I agree, "Hugo" is an excellent movie. I saw it AFTER I read your post, and I was drawn into those extended tracks.
    It was an actual STORY, not a string of over-the-top action sequences; almost a Disney or a Grimm's kind of story, and the intricate details of the clock and the gears and the other illusions were mesmerizing. I must have stopped the movie a dozen times to get into the detail.
    This is one of Scorsese's best, a real five star effort.

  3. #603
    Senior Member Bob's Avatar
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    King of Kings (1961) A+

    Saw this epic film on the big screen for the first time, at the AFI Silver Theater, in Silver Spring, MD, this past Sunday. Spectacular filmmaking, shot in Super Technirama 70 but (alas) showed in digital format which cropped some of the widescreen process. Nonetheless, this was an awesome movie-going experience. King of Kings is not on par with the 1959 Ben-Hur, but it sure comes pretty close. Music by the genius, Miklos Rosza, who also did the Ben-Hur soundtrack. We were told by the curator at AFI Silver that 70 MM prints of King of Kings are no longer available...that is so very sad. King of Kings is an overlooked masterpiece, and we were very privileged to see this, and then appropriately so on Easter.

  4. #604
    Forum Veteran TREPYE's Avatar
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    ^^^Casablanca is one of my all-time favorites as well :-).

    For all u Tarantino afficionados... Django Unchained did not disappoint. As usual all the acting was sublime and as usual (but not always) the bad guy gives the memorable performance (DiCaprio).

    Too bad the the Academy does not exhibit enough wisdom to acknowledge that. Blatant things like that dampen the credibility of how we arrive at honoring our best performers/movies. They have messed so many awards throughtout the years that I hope that one day another body would be considered for this task.
    Last edited by TREPYE; January 11th, 2013 at 08:46 AM.

  5. #605
    Chief Antagonist Ninjahedge's Avatar
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    I do not follow awards anymore.

    Some strike the iron, and can tell you a decent flik, but few hit "best" with any frequency.

  6. #606

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    I watched an oddity last week--"Detropia", a clever play on words and a melancholy attempt to illustrate the decline and demise of a once-great American city, Detroit. Not long ago, Detroit was a powerhouse, a city among cities, a place where the great American Middle Class was practically invented.
    The Center City was loaded with wonderful deco-era skyscrapers and the neighborhoods, filled with proud brick homes and leafy streets were middle-class wealthy. Then it all crashed. The population was halved, then halved again, the factories closed, the stores grew plywood windows and what was finally left was a city of poverty, where the streets, now empty of homes and people, have come to resemble farmland. The factories and office buildings look like Roman ruins and the future looks like shit.

    The movie tries too hard to be a quasi-documentary, but it graphically outlines Detroit's current sad position and makes me fear for the future of the Rust Belt.

  7. #607

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    I'll try to catch it, Hof, though I do like the docs better. When you get a chance, read 'Detroit: An American Autopsy'. Harrowing. They're trying over there, they really are, but they'll never get back to what they used to be.

    Btw check this short doc about the Pruitt-Igoe projects in St Louis, one of the most massive public housing projects in the US. Designed by Yamasaki of original WTC. Completed in 1956. Demolition began on the first buildings in 1972, and was finally complete in 1976.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jYrMUcT1jP4
    Last edited by mariab; September 23rd, 2013 at 11:15 PM.

  8. #608
    Chief Antagonist Ninjahedge's Avatar
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    When the limb is gangrenous, you cut it off before it kills.

    I am not saying Detroit should be cut off, but they should do their best to "reclaim" their lost lands as exactly what you said. Farmland. They need to pull in what they have an concentrate...

    I really do not know how they can do this, but if they do not then I see it falling further under its own weight crushing only those not able to move out of the way.

  9. #609

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    Yeah, but how many farmers think 'Detroit' when they're looking to stake a claim? Although, I read that a beaver was seen swimming in (or nesting near) the Detroit River for the first time in 75 years. Good for the environment as far as agricultural possibilities are concerned, but big business lurers don't want to hear that.

  10. #610
    Chief Antagonist Ninjahedge's Avatar
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    I think Kentucky Fried Movie...


    "Take him to.... DETROIT!"

  11. #611
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    SNOWPIERCER

    Brutal, exciting, and worth it if you can stand that sort of thing. Plus Tilda Swinton is outrageously + horrifically fantastic (all the actors are terrific).

    The old grump Rex Reed declares it a Masterpiece:


    A Masterpiece of Carnage From South Korea’s Most Imaginative Filmmaker








  12. #612

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    Chef.

    Though a little pudgy around the edges and with some thin back stories I found this movie delightful. And appetizing.

    Great, brief performances from the likes of Dustin Hoffman and Oliver Platt.

  13. #613
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    BOYHOOD

    Terrific.


  14. #614

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    ^ Next on my list. Have heard great things.

    This past weekend I had the pleasure of watching Coherence. A low, low budget American sci-fi movie that was filmed by the director, in his own home and yet is one of the best sci-fi stories I've enjoyed in quite a while. Fantastic acting.

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