Sunday, 20 February 2011

Nosferatu, Eine Symphonie Des Grauens

One of the most iconic images in horror movies. As Max
Schreck's count is silhouetted on the wall
image via wikipedia
In 1922 the legendary German director F.W. Murnau made one of his most famous films, Nosferatu, eine Symphonie des Grauens (Nosferatu, A Symphony of Terror). Regarded as one of the greatest and most important horror movies of all time, the film takes the story of Dracula but changes the names in an attempt to avoid litigation from Bram Stoker's estate (it failed. Many copies of the movie were destroyed at the court's request following Florence Stoker's successful copyright infringement lawsuit). These people, however, seem to be unaware of this film's historical importance. Or perhaps they don't care. Here. We. Go:
I know it was filmed over 80 years ago, but this is pure and utter bore (It is many things, nearly 90 years old for example, but it is not boring. The images of the Count [played wonderfully by Max Schreck] prowling around his castle are beautifully shot and are worth the price of admission alone)! How on earth can people say this is the best scary movie ever made and briliantly filmed and acted i dont know (Because those people have taste? Because those people know what makes a good horror movie?)! 
Firstly, the picture quality is astonishingly bad (It was made in 1922, and most of the original copies were destroyed, with mostly just the copies surviving. What do you expect? Fully HD, IMAX quality film?)! You'd think that with all the new technology available today that someone could make the picture atleast bareable, yet instead it practically hurts to look at (It's not great, but I've certainly seen films in worse condition.). 
The caharcters can NOT ACT (Several things. Point 1, it's spelt characters. Point 2, they are actors. The fictional beings they play are the characters. Point 3, they can act. And they do. It's just acting was different back then. The acting styles were influenced heavily by the stage, so that the audience could grasp the emotions without sound)! its worse then a 5 year olds christmad concert at school, the movements are corny and its all sooooooooooooooooooooooooo terrible! (You know you've got a review when they stick extra letters in to emphasize their point...)
I know you'll read this review and decide to buy it anyway because the overall rating is 5 stars (I certainly hope so. I'd hate to think that someone decided not to watch this film because of your crap review), but trust (Trust what?)....its way over-hyped. (No. You're just a clueless idiot.)
If that wasn't enough, I have more!:
 When I saw all the marketing blurb about this film, I thought it would be pretty good (Then you were shocked to find it excellent?). Modern vampire films are entertaining and exciting (What vampire films? This review is from 2007, so the only ones I can think of are the Blades, of which only the first two are good, and even then they aren't masterpieces. And possibly I Am Legend and 30 Days of Night which are good and okay respectively, but are hardly legendary.), but they very rarely scare me, so when I saw the information claiming that this film "continues to haunt and terrify modern audiences," I thought Nosferatu would definitely be worth a watch (And it definitely is.). 
I was disappointed (Why? Did you forget to watch it?). I'm not going to comment on the quality of filming, special effects or anything because the film is so old and the technology was nothing like today's, so it's not really relevant (Yay. I suppose?). However, I found this film pretty laughable (Less yay. More groan). I thought the fact it was a silent film would add to the creepiness (It does.), but I found that the overacting in place to make up for lack of words just gave me the giggles (You don't want to complain about the effects etc., because they're so old, but you will complain about the acting? Didn't you see my explanation for that? I don't care if you wrote this nearly 4 years ago.)
The storyline of course, was good because it was based on Bram Stoker's novel, published 24 years earlier than this film (Pretty loosely though). But there seriously was no fear factor for me (and I'm a wimp!) (You do realise that the 'fear factor' isn't the be-all and end-all don't you? Stick to Saw in future please). All of the vampire's skulking around, and appearing in doorways, staring out of windows etc, had me clutching my sides in mirth (Then, sir, you have no appreciation for great cinematography). Maybe that's just me, but I'm pretty sure that's not the reaction they were going for when they made this film. (No. But brainless morons weren't their intended audience either.)
Maybe I'm cynical, maybe I've seen too many other vampire movies and read too many vampire books, but there are certainly much scarier things out there than this (Scarier? Yes. Better made? Almost certainly not.). This is not a patch on Dracula the novel - simply because drawing your own imagery from your imagination can be so much more effective (Never, ever compare the movies to the novels. I used to, but have realised it's a fruitless exercise. The film can never match the detail of the novel.). Unless you're a total film buff, or know someone that is, I'd give this a miss. (I bet non 'total film buffs' could find some enjoyment from this film. My brother, for example.)
Well, there's only one stupid review left, so I might as well use it:
While people who have watched a lot of films from the same era as Nosferatu may find this movie a 'masterpiece', anyone who just wants a horror movie to scare the sh*t out of them need not bother (Again, there is more to this film than its ability to scare. Which, I shall concede, has been lessened by the passing of the decades. However, I feel the need to point out [and not for the first time] that shock and gore are not truly scary. Most modern horror movies play for instant shock, rather than true terror and dread that sticks with you after the credits have rolled. And they are much the poorer for that.).I was expecting to be scared senseless, the reputation of this movie is to be one of the best horror movies of all time, maybe that was the case when it was made, but now I would say the average episode of Eastenders is more scary than this (Best horror movie of all time is meant in a technical, and historical importance sense, rather than purely by its ability to scare. Once more I am forced to advise you to stick to torture porn).
This movie is definately only one to be bought only by people looking for a taste of what early movie attempts were like or want to study early german silent movies (Or those, certainly not you, who can appreciate an excellent film, regardless of its age) (despite the fact that the new score at times doesn't seem to be on the same track as the movie). (What's that? A possibly useful point on this particular version of the movie? Deary be.)
Well, at least I managed to avoid any massive rants this time... 

Friday, 18 February 2011

The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo

Noomi Rapace, the titular female with the ink. A tough
act to follow for the US version...  image silive
At the weekend Mark Kermode presented the BAFTA award for Best Foreign Language Film to The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo. A Swedish movie based on Stieg Larsson's bestselling novel. In addition to the BAFTA it has won widespread acclaim from almost all major critics. Sadly, it wasn't hard to find some bad reviews for it...:
The only way in which you could like this film is if you hadn't read the book and/or had a cinema-appreciation-bypass (It is true I haven't read the books, they're on my to-do list, but I have certainly not had a 'cinema-appreciation-bypass'. As a man who owns in excess of 300 films, ranging from modern blockbusters to cinema classics, I think it's fair to say I can appreciate cinema. And what about all the critics? 87% of them liked it, are you saying that the likes of Mark Kermode, Kim Newman and Roger Ebert have no appreciation for cinema? If you are then you've clearly had an intelligent thought bypass...). The plot is so cut down from the original that it has removed all of the characterisation and soul from the players (If you've read the book, then I presume you must have seen how long the book is. It would be impossible to transfer everything to film in a film 5 hours long. And there is certainly some characterisation left. Enough for anyone who hasn't read the book.), and just presents a series of barely connected events that leave the plot seeming very contrived (It works fine as it is. If I was being kind, I'd say maybe your love of the book has blinded you to the brilliance of the film. But I'm not. So I'll say you're a prick instead.). I guarentee guarantee that 95% of the people that have read and enjoyed the books will hate this film (I suspect not. I know more than one person who has read the book and loves the film). The style looks cheap and amateurish too (Cheap and amateurish is going somewhat far. It was made on a pretty tight budget, so is not the most attractively shot piece of cinema, but the direction is perfectly adequate.). 
As a lover of the books (We'd noticed...), I knew that there was always a risk that the film would be parred (I think you mean pared...) down sopmewhat, as with many adaptations (As I explained, it is necessary to edit, but the plot still works in its film incarnation). The Potter films are not as good as the books, but they are not-bad films (They are indeed eminently watchable. But this is much better than all of them). Dragon Tattoo is the most dissapointing film from a good novel since the Golden Compass ruined Pullman's Northern Lights (There's no need for that kind of language certainly...).
Well, here's another for your delectation:
I think I must have goggles on as when I watched this film last night, I was gutted!! (Are they moron goggles?)
I have just started the 2nd book and love it as much as the 1st so I was very excited about seeing the film, what a mess!!! (What did you do? Spill curry on the floor? Because the film is very much not a mess.)
The acting was 2nd rate (Yes, that'll be why Noomi Rapace has been widely praised for her performance. And why Roger Ebert applauded her "unwavering intensity") and the whole thing looked like a poor 1970's porno (I've never seen a 1970s porno, but I can imagine what they'd be like. You're still wearing those moron goggles aren't you?),it was only because I had read the book that it stayed on for the duration (It's a really good film. It didn't once test my patience. Or the patience of either of the two people I was watching it with)
I do hope that someone will do this amazing writing some justice and make a better film with some less wooden acting (The acting is brilliant. Especially from the two leads. No woodiness here.) and less cheapness. (David Fincher is making an English language version. Most critics are despairing over this. Except Claudia Winkleman. Except she's not a critic, just a presenter.)
will be hoping for better !!!! (What are you expecting? A modern Citizen Kane?)
And here's one more to finish us off. Be warned. A rant is forthcoming...:
 Having read the book I was excited to be getting the DVD. However, when I received it, I read the small print on the back of the case, only to realise that this was in Swedish with English subtitles. (Of course it was in fucking Swedish. It was made in Sweden. It was based on a Swedish book. That was set in Sweden. Why the fuck would it be in English? Why is it such a terrible idea that people in a foreign land want to watch a film in their own language? We're lucky here in that we get to watch American films in our language. Every other country has to go and see all the blockbusters that we take for granted either dubbed or subtitled. If you don't like subtitled films then that's your problem. But do not come down here and give an excellent film one star because you're lazy and can't be arsed reading a few lines at the bottom of the screen. I hate you and all people like you. You are what is wrong with the world of cinema today. If you hate subtitles so much that you couldn't watch an excellent movie, then I'd pity you if I didn't despise you. I'm going to learn Swedish on the offchance that I meet you one day, so you have to read subtitles to converse with me. And then I'll hit you with a lead pipe.)
This was not in the description at all on Amazon, and I have now returnd the DVD and got a full refund. (Send your brain back, perhaps the replacement will be less fucking stupid.)
I'm sorry, but he made me very angry... 

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Blade Runner Pt.2

Oh God it's so dark. The real world isn't dark...
Image via seenax
Long-time readers may have noticed that I really rather like Sir Ridley Scott's sci-fi-noir masterpiece, Blade Runner. I know I've already done  a post on bad reviews for it, but I had left America's wells of stupidity untapped. But I shall rectify this oversight now!:
I've seen all the versions of this film and, for some reason, really want to like it (If you didn't like it the fist time, then why the fuck did you think any of the other editions would float your boat?). Unfortunately, most of the movie takes place in dark rooms, intended to symbolize, perhaps, a dark future but serves only to underscore the unreality of the film. Any real person going into any of the rooms in this film would open the drapes or turn on a light (Excuse me? All the rooms are dark because it is recall the black & white film of the 1940s/50s noir movies. It doesn't make it any less real. Surely if you're okay with the idea of replicants, you can suspend belief enough to cope with people leaving the lights off? And it's a post apocalyptic-y dystopia, so there might well be little electricity to use on excessive lighting. And it's almost always dark outside, so opening curtains really wouldn't do an awful lot...). It is like the technical director is about 14 years old. (Ironically, I was thinking the same about this review...)
And it is slow, possibly so that we don't miss the product placement. (There isn't that much product placement. And the film travels just as quickly as it needs to. I recommend you stick to Transformers and other Michael Bay movies in future)

I know this is supposed to be noirish, but noir films always clip right along (Actually, quite a few them take as much time to move along as this one. And it's not slow anyway, it merely takes its time). This drones along with a David Lynch obscurity (again, think 14 year old (You realise that David Lynch was not 14 when Eraserhead [his debut] was made don't you? Or are you trying to suggest that Lynch is juvenile? In which case I have four words for you: Elephant Man, and Blue Velvet.)). I think if I were stoned as I watched it I might think it was deep (It's actually pretty deep as it is. What could possibly be more deep than the questioning of humanity, and what makes a human, a human?). But, unfortunately, I wasn't, so I just wish they'd turn the lights on. (Leave the fucking lights alone!)
Here we have another stellar review:
I read that this was the greatest sci-fi movie ever made (It's probably not the greatest sci-fi movie ever, but that's primarily because of 2001: A Space Odyssey). I love sci-fi but this movie sucked (I hate to deal in absolutes, but if you don't appreciate this film in any way, then you clearly don't like sci-fi)! People say it has "intensely packed action" (Well there are  number of action scenes, and the movie is pretty intense, but I would question the overall phrase). It almost put me to sleep (Then more fool you). The themes could have made a good movie (They could have. And did.) but this is a disjointed mess (You're a disjointed fucking mess! Also, this film isn't). It takes place where the sun doesn't shine, literally, and it rains all the time (It's called film noir. It's quite a famous genre/movement. Look it up sometime). Harrison Ford and Rutger Hauer do OK with the script they're given (They do very well with the very good script). The writing and directing are the problem (No they aren't. The direction in particular is an utter joy and comes very close to perfection). It's VERY SLOW! (It isn't bloody slow! It's well paced) Wanna buy my copy? (Nah, I've got my own thanks.) Total Recall and iRobot draw the good points from this movie. Get those instead! (Now, I really like both of those movies. But to put both of them ahead of Blade Runner is pure, grade A bullshit.)
Here's a little bonus, a review from back home in Britain that I missed last time around!:
Utter, utter, utter dross. (Yes. One of the greatest sci-fi films of all time is 'dross'.) One of the worst films I have ever seen (What have you seen? Just Citizen Kane, Casablanca and Seven Samurai? Cause among that company it would be the worst.), clearly only rated so highly by sci-fi nerds and people who want to appear retro cool. (Yes, only nerds and phoneys can like this film. That must be how it gets so praised by almost every professional critic...) The only interesting thing about this film was how you can see the influence it has clearly had on other sci-fi films such as Terminator and Minority Report. (Surely the fact that great filmmakers like James Cameron [well, he was great back then, anyway] and Steven Spielberg were influenced by it would suggest that perhaps you just don't get it. Possibly because you're a witless oaf.)
Well, I shall be back soon with more anger and hate towards the idiots of the world...

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Melanie Phillips is at it again.

DAVOS/SWITZERLAND, 29JAN10 - David Cameron, Le...Ooh, look at him there, destroying our contry with his gay agenda for gays!Image via WikipediaYup, our dear old Mel is back on her high horse, terrifying the public with the thought of Gay Marriage! Won't someone think of the children?

Now, there's a lot to be said on the issue of marriage. I, like the next person (Unless the next person is Melanie Phillips) support full equality for people regardless of sex, sexuality, race or sexy race. However, marriage is a religious service, so it is possible to argue against forcing religions to accept homosexual marriages if their religion is... well, homophobic.

Mel's article, of course, overlooks any sensible argument in favour of hyperbole and fear-mongering - a nice piece of coverage is available at Shouting at Cows, so I won't spend too long on the content itself. But I do want to look at two points:

Firstly, the reforms our Mel is so opposed to, in her own words "doesn’t force religious institutions to introduce such ceremonies; whether they do so is up to them." So, really, most churches won't do anything differently. Because they're not being forced to let filthy queers through their venerated doors. And because they're homophobic.

Secondly, I'd like to look at Mel's splendid comparison between gays and people who bone otters. Sorry, it isn't a comparison. She says it isn't.:
If still in doubt, try this thought experiment. Imagine the Government was planning to recognise polygamy and polyandry (I'm imagining it. Ok, it isn't bothering me. Seems to work ok for Mormons... But I suppose your point is that it's against old fashioned Judeo-Christian principles. But not Muslim ones! Ooh, cunning. Polygamy is the weapon of the Mohammodite enemy!) (marriage with more than one woman or man), or marriage between ‘zoophiles’ (people who have ‘loving and committed relationships with mammals’, or bestiality to you and me (I was ok dealing with the term zoophilia. But thanks for clarifying.)) and their, er, partners. (Well, the problem here is that this is a terrible example. The moral arguments against zoophilia are completely different to homosexuality - animals cannot give us consent, so it's the same as raping them. If animals could talk and think like us, the debate would be more relevant)

If you think this is merely grotesque satire, you would be sadly out of date. There are now campaigns in North America to recognise the ‘equal rights’ of such people and end ‘discrimination’ against them. (Of course there are. I imagine there are campaigns for anything somewhere though)

If ‘marriage’ were extended to such groups, people would rightly conclude the institution was being turned into a meaningless joke (Well, the second group perhaps. But I don't really mind the idea of consenting adults marrying more than one person, if everyone is happy.). Yet the argument — that people with different sexual lifestyles must be treated identically — is exactly the same (No. It isn't - the line is that consenting adults can do what they like, providing it doesn't hurt anyone. This is an admirable piece of policy. Animals, however, are not consenting adults, so it is not the same at all. It's almost as if you purposely want people to equate putting your penis in a man with putting your penis in a goat. (And no, before the hate mail starts, I’m not suggesting gays are on a moral par with zoophiles. No. You do claim to support the traditional Biblical stance towards homosexuals though. And that stance is to put them to death. Incidentally, you were implying they were similar. Only in your last sentence did you say the argument against homosexuals is the same as the argument against bestiality.))
So, now I've got that out of my system, I want to look at some of the spectacular comments that the broad-minded readers of our Mel's column have added to the debate:
Disappointed in you David Cameron (I imagine he'll be able to live with it), you are bowing to the politically correct (Ah yes, the catch-all phrase for the evils of the modern age - a well-meaning set of ideas that aim to make everyone be nicer to each other, how horrid!) but which church will actually agree to marry same sex couples(Well, according to Michael White at the Guardian, Quakers, Unitarians and Liberal Jewish denominations) ? C of E have said they will not, Roman Catholics don't agree with it, and most of the other denominations like Evangelicals, Baptists, Methodists, URC all keep to biblical truths and most certainly would not think of it ............................ (Of course not, so what's your problem then? They won't be forced to carry it out, and you can carry on living your blinkered little bigot life without your beloved church being tainted by poofs and their evil agenda. Incidentally, that isn't how you use full stops.)
Another masterpiece in the field of philosophical debate:
Gay marriage (So, you grasped the subject of the article? Well done.). Yeah, very modern (I suppose so). Very trendy (Yea, that's a word people still use). A nice legal arrangement. (Yea, I guess so. It is nice to think that two people would be so committed to each other they would make a legal declaration of it. Gives you hope for society really) Helps when a gay couple wants to adopt (Yea, I suppose it is a good way to show they're committed to each other, and thus more likely to provide a stable environment). But not worth a lot of fuss for the relatively small number of gays in the country (Ah, I see. It is only worth bringing about reforms that help the majority. So, if people are in a minority, we should let them suffer? Cancer sufferers are, I imagine and hope, only a small proportion of society. Should we not make any fuss about them? Probably not - we could take the money we saved from cancer research and treatment and use it to give the white middle-classes better conservatories or something). Stonewall seems to overstate the number of gays around because that's in their interests but apparently the percentage is about 1-3 (Really? Then I seem to know a disproportionate number of homosexuals.). They just make a lot of noise (Yea, it'll be all that dancing they do). The only problem with letting them marry is that they'll then want something else (What, like a nuclear stockpile?). Gay rights activists are not going to stop now (Well, no. Would you stop if you were treated unequally, if little bigoted fucks wrote stupid comments about you on the Internet?). Which is silly because resentment is growing (I don't know where you live mate, but I've never seen a mob lynching effigies of Stephen Fry). Britain is getting really tired of interest groups (No. You are, evidently. Are you the whole country? Your ego certainly seems big enough). All of them. Gays, feminists, Muslims, etc (blacks, Jews, Asians, the elderly, the terminally ill, the mentally ill, gypsies, Catholics, Jehovah's witnesses? I Know I'm committing Godwin's fallacy, but I'm going to mention Hitler and point out the obvious parallels...). They just don't seem to know when to stop. (Ooh, but I bet you know how to stop them, eh? Ship them back to where they came from, Gayland or something? Or gas the lot?)
But it gets better:
It is time to say no more now (Let's take a stance! Shoot them all!). The long campaign by the homosexuals to be not normal but better than the heterosexuals is now over (Yea, bloody the homosexuals, organising their campaigns of freakery, thinking they're better than us but weirder than us!). We admit you exist, how can we not do (Denial? You could try that...)? But marriage is as Melanie writes and most of us believe a contract between a man and a woman for the procreation normally of children to keep the human race going (Most of us also believe in the comma. But really, the reason behind most marriages is not to honour God or procreate. It's because two people love each other enough to commit to that publicly. Which seems rather a nice idea. Do you really think that there can be no future for mankind without marriage?). The homosexuals' campaign has gone too far (Damn you, the homosexuals! You've gone too far, wanting to paint churches pink and put your penises in the pews!) . Never will I admit or acknowledge any homosexuals claiming to be "married" as being so and I will say so in public whatever the cost (Ok then. So this shouldn't really bother you then). They have civil partnerships for financial protection so why bother getting married in a church etc. (Maybe they believe in God and want to praise him through the miracle of marriage? I don't know, I don't understand everyone's motivation for everything)? Why is it so important to them (I just explained, I don't know. Pay attention)? So they can consider themselves normal (What exactly do you think is normal?)? Well, we all have news for you (Good show.). Mother Nature or God has been very cruel but then she/He has to those born blind or deaf etc. (Ok, that sentence really needed to be rewritten. But your point is that, in your opinion, God directly created homosexuals, made them Gay, then wants us all to have a go at them? If you thought it was a choice or something, you'd be a fucking idiot, but at least I would understand your opposition. But no, you think God is a cruel being who creates the disabled and the gay and the strange looking people, then encourages us all to put them to death? You have a problem...)
Speaking of thinking homosexuality is a choice:
 Britain today is experiencing a concerted effort by gay lobbyists to subvert the social order as we know it, in order to suit their lifestyle choice in the name of 'equality' (It isn't a lifestyle choice. Some people are just gay, in the same way some people are fucking morons.). If you disagree or express a different view, you are labelled a bigot and may even be prosecuted (Seems fair enough, you should try not to be bigoted then.). Why is the government constantly changing or creating new laws with far reaching consequences for society just for this minority (Because minorities, being in the minority, often need protected.)? Marriage is a solemn union between a man and a woman (Seriously? You think that's the reason behind every heterosexual marriage? Solemn declarations before God?. It is the source of the nuclear family (Oh, I didn't realise this comment was being left by 1950s America). A commitment between gays/lesbians is a civil union (At the moment. If a religion chooses to accept Gay/lesbian marriage as acceptable however, it is a marriage. Since marriage is often free of religious belief for heterosexuals, it should be equal for homosexuals). They can NEVER bring about offspring by their sexual relations (So?). A marriage and civil union are therefore two different things (Obviously. That's the point people are making). Just because you CHANGE the law to suit this lifestyle, they will NEVER be the same thing (for you. And presumably, your church. So, you know, it won't affect your life at all). civil unions will NEVER have the same meaning, dignity, honour and respect MARRIAGE has always enjoyed since Adam & Eve. (You're saying that sentence with a straight face? Ok then... Firstly, pretending Adam and Eve are real, not metaphorical fictional characters, were they actually married? Oh yea, because Adam was a divorcee, of course. So that's strike one against your traditional marriage. Strike two - they were always naked, doesn't sound dignified. Honour? They disobeyed God. He was pretty pissed about it, didn't you hear? and strike 4, the idea of respect? They, apparently, produced the whole of mankind through incestuous reproduction. So yea, not a great example of the magic of marriage...)
And lastly:
With the brainwashing of our children as young as 5 years old in government schools about the virtue of same-sex relationships (Not the virtue. Just the existence and no-evil nature of them. And it isn't brainwashing - certainly not like the forced Christianity many have had to endure from as young as 5 in schools. I, for one, was given no choice but to accept Christianity as fact when I was that age.), we now have a government that champions this cause to the point of upsetting a history of what is recognised, accepted, agreed, as real morality and proven behaviour (We kept black children as pets for a long time... Most of the history of our contact with people who look different is concerned with slavery, forced labour and exploitation - is that the moral history you mean?. Your article here seems pretty accurate and its content saddens and sickens (Not as much as the fact people like you agree saddens and sickens me). . I hear young, brainwashed people tell how our morals are decided and set by society (They are, you know. There's no guiding moral force)...not conscience (Well, I don't think many people say that has no influence...), not the Bible (Have you read the whole bible, and do you practise everything it says? The contradictory parts, the bits about forcing rape victims to marry their rapists if they were raped in the city, the bits about not wearing certain clothing, about stoning children to death for questioning their parents?), not history (Seriously? Have you ever studied history? It is a succession of bad people doing bad things), not loving and concerned parents (You think that parents make up absolute moral laws? What if they disagree?)..and that society is changing (yup). It sure is.....brainwashing, and evil government action are making sure it does (Often, yea. But not in this case)....all leading the weak to immorality and oblivion (Yea. That's what it is. Damned immoral ideals like being nice to each other! Jesus wouldn't have supported niceness!). Churches are now at a crossroads (Only if they were built at one). They stand firm by their doctrine (But they don't, they change constantly.)....or die, for if they capitulate they have no reason to exist. Soon we may have prisons of Christians (Well, maybe. But I don't imagine they'll be prisoners simply for their beliefs and... Wait! Are you saying we shouldn't punish people for their beliefs? Gosh, that seems an odd statement from you.....and the real criminals and oddballs will be at large, further moulding the new morals of society.(You mean murders and rapists, or gays and funny-coloured people?)

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Monday, 14 February 2011

The Fighter

Yes! I've tracked down reviews from a current release that is still in cinemas! The Fighter tells the story of Mark Wahlberg's "Irish" Micky Ward, a boxer, and his brother/trainer/crackhead, Christian Bale's Dicky Eklund. I, and many others, feel this was an exceptionally good film, with fantastic performances from all involved. This review from Christian Spotlight disagrees. Stupidly:
With all due respect to the Ward family, I must agree with Roger Eberts review (I like Roger Ebert. He is one of my favourite film critics. But he was wrong about this film, as he was wrong about Kick-Ass. And anyway, Ebert still liked the film a little bit...). I know Lowell, as I trained there as a teenager in a sweaty dump with other serious fighters, middle of January, no treadmills, nowhere to run due to snow and inner city, this was 1962, you sparred, skip rope, hit the speedbag, hit the heavy bag, shadow boxed. And I still do. (Woop-ti-doo for you. It doesn't matter if you know Lowell. It doesn't make your opinion any more valid)

This movie does not showcase boxing (Just because it's about a boxer doesn't mean it has to be about boxing per se). It broadcasts the domination of a young man by his mother and 7 blowhard sisters (That's because its about Micky Ward's life. Not just his fights). It does not champion his Ring magazine “Fight of the Year” with Augustus Burton, 10 rounds of pure bull boxing, it does not showcase his three fights with Arturo Gatti which set him up with fame and fortune as he has now (Well they all take place after the movie has finished. Those fights weren't what the fight was about). In fact, he will be here in Nashua NH to sign autographs today at the movie theater. Nashua is right over the border from Lowell about 13 miles. (This is important to the review how?)

It is mostly soap opera, screaming women and cursing (It's about life. Ward's life. Those were dominant elements of his life. Ergo, that is what the film concentrates on.). The boxing is minimal, don't waste your money (If you want to see boxing matches, watch a fucking boxing match). It is so far from Rocky it is a joke (It is indeed far from Rocky. This is a properly good film about an interesting character, whereas Rocky is an enjoyable film, but no more than that). Nice try, but it is no boxing movie, and just not heroic enough (It is a boxing movie, in the same way that any other film about a boxer is a a boxing movie. The characters are far more interesting than just the fights taken out of context). Christianity does not even exist in this mess. (It isn't meant to. And besides, you complain about a film that isn't christian, but also complain about the lack of boxing? Boxing, lets not forget, is literally a man beating up another man until he can't get up again. Where is the christianity in that?)
Well, I got desperate, so here's a 3 star review from
There is a very high rating of this film on internet movie database (2 things: first, the film deserves a high rating; and second, IMDB is shit for that kind of thing. Citizen Kane is down in 37th in its Top250. Behind things like The Matrix.). I actually went to the theater to watch it and I don't think it deserves anything more than a 6/10 (I would say at least an eight. The acting is a joy to behold). Wahlberg is OK (As Kermode and Bale point out, without Wahlberg's understated performance, the film would have fallen apart because of the madness of Dicky. Bale needed a straight man), Amy Adams' character was quite despicable for some reason (In what way was she despicable? She had Micky's best interests at heart. Far more than can be said about his mother.)(maybe some sort of intelligent formula (What does that even mean? Do intelligent women scare you or something?)) and Christian Bale was the saving grace of the film. (He was engrossing. But didn't need to save the film)

Very ordinarily narrated and the direction left me gasping out of despair at certain times (The direction was fine. Nothing special, he should definitely not have been Oscar nominated ahead of Christopher Nolan, but perfectly good. And the fights were excellently choreographed and filmed), maybe it's the bad luck Wahlberg brings to any film featuring him. (Ye-es. Bad luck. That'll be why Boogie Nights, The Departed, Three Kings among others failed critically and financially then...)

There were maybe 2 good scenes in the whole film. (There were significantly more than that. The scene when he is at home with Charlene telling his mother and sisters that he was going to move to Las Vegas to train was wonderful. And then there was the scene where Ward tells his brother that he can't train with him anymore. And then there was the scene where Dicky gets arrested. That's three off the top of my head for you right there.)

I could have lived my life without watching this film (You could probably live without seeing any film though, couldn't you...) but I can't say that about some of the better films this year (Black Swan, T.S.N, Buried and The Town) (I don't think you'd die if you hadn't seen one of those films... I haven't seen any of them yet...)

Please watch the film before buying the DVD, it's over-rated in my view. (I suppose that's reasonable advice, but I'm going to pretend it isn't... I would say it deserves most of its plaudits. Except the Best Director nod anyway...)
 Well, I shall endeavour to bring you more bad reviews tomorrow! Till then my adoring public!

Saturday, 12 February 2011

There Will Be Blood

"I drink your milkshake!"
Whilst writing the post the other day on Boogie Nights, I mentioned that Paul Thomas Anderson would go on to make the Daniel Day-Lewis starring There Will Be Blood. As the film was suddenly in the forefront of my mind, I have decided to write a piece on bad reviews of that as well. Now, I'm willing to admit that P.T. Anderson's most recent film isn't exactly the most action-packed of movies, but the powerhouse performance from Mr. Day-Lewis, and the interesting characters keep you hooked to the end. These folks from should have stuck to simpler films like Transformers...:
There will be few movies worse than this! (Really? If you think this is one of the worst movies of all time then, quite frankly, you need to seek psychiatric help)
I was eagerly waiting for this movie to arrive after watching the previews and interview with Daniel Day-Lewis who I believe to be a superb actor. (He is indeed. And this is his best performance. At least that I've seen)

Imagine my disappointment when this turned out to be one of the most boring (I can see how some, small-minded people might feel this way), irritating (How is it irritating? Do you find all excellent films that are well made, directed and acted irritating?), going-nowhere extremely slowly (It goes somewhere. [SPOILER coming up] It goes to Plainview's fall. The fall of this horrible, greedy man is where it goes), movies I have ever had the misfortune to waste my time on. (I can only presume, therefore, that you haven't seen many movies. Perhaps you only know DD-L from such films as Last of the Mohicans...)

This movie illustrates that superb acting and camera work are not enough to make a good movie without those essential ingredients of an interesting plot and good tempo. (It has an interesting plot. Just not an exciting one. There is a difference. And what the fuck does 'good tempo' even mean? A film should move only as fast as it needs to. Too slow and it becomes bloated and a chore to sit through, but too fast and we lose characterisation and development. Each film's optimum tempo is different. This film hits it just right.)
I have to say, I'm quite proud of that last bit...:
There will be gloom. (I see what you've done there. It's so hilarious I think I'm going to have to lie down for an hour)
Gruesome. (It's not gruesome...)

Not even Daniel Day-Lewis' acting in this movie can lift the dark brooding gloom of this awful film. (It's not awful. It's excellent. And, yes, it is dark. But it was supposed to be. So saying it is isn't an insult.)
Quality sets, acting and appearance, but gloomy dark and oppressive (So? That's the intended feel of the movie. It aims to show that greed is bad). If there is an anti feel-good movie, this is it... (Nah, that'd probably be Through A Glass Darkly. But anyway, it isn't a feel-good movie. It doesn't want to be. Not everything has to be the same. Not everything has to be cheery like a bad Disney film)
Horrid. (Yes. Your review was horrid.)
 Here's one more. This guy even commits the cardinal sin of reviewing!:
I was getting very very excited before I purchased this film. (You know you shouldn't be sexually aroused from DVDs right?)
Got it for Friday film night at home; surround sound on; lights down.
Following on from all the press adoration (Adoration for good reason, I might add) I couldn't wait to get it into the DVD player; anyway after half and hour I was wondering when it was going to `warm' up (it will come in a minute I'm sure!) after an hour I was exchanging glances with my girlfriend (Does she know about your DVD fetish?). Eventually after an hour and a half we both decided we had had enough. (What?! You didn't even finish the film? Then why the fuck are you reviewing it on here then you moronic fucktard? You cannot review something if you have not seen the whole film. If you don't know the full story arc then it is ludicrous to say you don't like it. Didn't you read my post from yesterday?) Sold it the next day on Amazon market place. (I hope the person you sold it to isn't as much of a twat)
Slow (Because it fucking needs to be!), uninspired (I'm not going to even dignify this with a proper response), over hyped (It deserves all the plaudits it has received. And more) platform for a Hollywood `method' (yeah right!) (He is a method actor. It is what he is. Ignorant fuck.) pre-Madonna. (In what way is DD-L a pre-Madonna? Because he is picky about what films he stars in? That just seems like good sense to me)
Save your Fridays for binge drinking it will be more academically challenging than this pile of bile! (I see. So slowly killing yourself is better in your eyes than this superb piece of film-making? Well, please, go ahead. We don't need you.)
Hmm... I was trying to move away from actually threatening people with violence and death. Oh well...

Friday, 11 February 2011

Paul's Rules, number 4 (except done by Ben...)

Yes, I've hijacked my friend's idea. What's he gonna do? Sue me? Actually, he probably will, but never mind...

One of the worst things anyone can do when reviewing a film (apart from disagree with me, obviously) is to review a film without having seen all of it. No matter how bad the film is, if you switch it off before the credits are rolling, you lose all rights to review it.

A film critic wouldn't review a film he had not seen, or seen only part of, so why do you people on Amazon believe you can do it? If you miss the end, then you will also miss crucial parts of the story. If, for example, you missed the end of The Sixth Sense, you'd miss the twist at the end that changes the whole film. If you only watched the first half hour or so of Audition, you would forever believe it to be a romantic comedy, never to know the horrible truth. To review either of these films without knowing the full plot would be grossly unfair to them. The strange thing is, people seem perfectly happy with reviewing a film they only see the first half of or sleep through the middle of, but don't review films that they missed the start of. People seem to forget that the ending of a film can have an effect on how the whole film works as a whole.

The moral of this piece is: to avoid appearing on this website, watching any films you intend on reviewing from start to finish is a good place to start.

Thursday, 10 February 2011

Boogie Nights

Marky Mark Walhberg has a large penis in it...
image via wikipedia
In 1997 Paul Thomas Anderson (later of There Will Be Blood fame) released his second film. Boogie Nights tells the story of Dirk Diggler, a young pornstar, and his associates in the late 70s and early 80s when the industry was beginning its movement from film to video. The film is generally regarded as possibly one of the most important films of the 90s. This first review comes from
I can't understand why this is such a highly rated film!! (The second exclamation mark really helps to lend credence to your argument...) There is nothing good about it except mindless violence (The violence isn't 'mindless', it is very important to the plot of the movie. It is necessary to reinforce the idea that the porn industry was not a fun place to be.), drug taking (Again, Diggler's fall from grace wouldn't pack much punch without a reason for it...) and stupid sexual innuendos (It's about the porn industry, what did you expect?). Fair enough this film is based on the porn industry so I would be a bit confused if there was no sex in it whatsoever but it's just the way it's shot and acted that seems so tacky (I believe it was meant to be tacky. Like the films and industry it is portraying). I apologize to people who have put this at the top of their hundred greatest films list but I really disliked it! (Well, at least you show remorse I suppose...)
I don't expect any such apologies from any body else. Speaking of which, here's some more from
Badly written (That'll be why it was nominated for best screenplay at the Oscars then...), badly directed (It really wasn't.), well acted (Yup), well made (Yup. So surely those last two points could have resulted in at least 2 stars then?). It cannot conceal the fact that it has absolutely nothing to say (It has a lot to say. For instance: that stardom, in this instance pornography, is not all its cracked up to be. Getting all that you wanted does not necessarily make you happy. And, more obviously, that drugs are bad). It simply mills around for about an hour, and then decides to throw some graphic violence on the screen as a last-ditch effort for some kind of Artistic Significance (No. It had artistic significance right from the off. The violence was there to bring several of the stories to a proper conclusion. That and, as previously said, to make the industry less glamorous). Avoid this film. It is utterly without any kind of value whatever. (Avoid this review. It is without any kind of value whatever. Unlike the film)
And here's another:
A long, boring, absolutely awful movie (It is 2 1/2 hours, so I suppose the claims of it being long are valid...). It introduces us to a lot of characters (It's an ensemble film, they always have a lot of characters), follows them around for a while, and then, when it seems to realize that nothing is going on, gives us a scene of graphic violence in a vain attempt to add significance to what must be the most empty film to be made in the wake of Quentin Tarantino's equally vapid Pulp Fiction. (It's actually an incredibly intelligent movie with an awful lot to say on its chosen subjects. I'm fed up of people saying violence in anything other than an action film is immediately bad. The violence works. It works because of the mood set by the rest of the picture. If you think both this and Pulp Fiction are vapid, then what precisely do count as depth?)
To close I'll leave you with this brilliant review:

Saturday, 5 February 2011

The Maltese Falcon

Clearly the most evil man in cinema history...
Considered a cornerstone of the film noir genre, The Maltese Falcon really is a very good film, rightly held up as one of the best films of the 1940s. Starring Humphrey Bogart as Private Eye, Sam Spade attempting to find the eponymous Falcon from Malta, a bejeweled golden hawk. Featuring all the traditional noir features, black and white cinematography, duplicitous and shady characters and a femme fatale, this is probably the best place to start for film noir newbies. So for the love of God, don't listen to these chumps from the DVD rental site lovefilm:
A tedious so-called classic (It isn't tedious for a start. And it is a classic. Whether you like it or not, that is what it is)
Quite how The Maltese Falcon is included in the American Institute’s top 100 is beyond me (Then I imagine lots of things will be beyond you...). It’s simply a typical 1940s hardboiled film noir (The fact that it was one of the first has obviously escaped you), populated by characters explaining the plot and their actions to each other (There is a little of that, but not too much. And anyway, that is just what films did back then. You can't apply modern movie techniques to films from 60 years ago). Humphrey Bogart plays Sam Spade, a cynical and smart-assed private directive, who quickly irritates with his tough talking wise guy routine (He only irritated you. I found him quite likable really.), as well as his habit of continually explaining the plot (It was 1941. People didn't go to the cinema to guess what was happening. And he didn't do it that much anyway, just a sort of summary at the end is all I can recall. But if you don't like that, then never watch a Poirot...). If you like watching plot heavy stories (What's that even supposed to mean? The plot is somewhat essential to cinema. Unless it's a sketch film of course...) with minimal character study, then The Maltese Falcon may appeal, otherwise stick to film noir classics Sunset Boulevard and Double Indemnity. (Those are both very good films, but why you like those and not this, its forefather, is beyond me. I suppose your opinions are worth far more than every major film critic in the world are they? Piss off.)
Well, I'm calm again. Let's move onto the next crudtastic review:
 Dreary. Just one room after another. (This is clearly a lie. They go outside on more than one occasion...)
Sorry to be the only person in the world who isn't bowled over by this but I was disappointed and bored (You're not the only one. Unfortunately. Just look at your fellow idiots either side of you...). I normally love Bogart and black and white film (This always sounds like a racist saying he isn't racist because he had a black friend...) so what was wrong? (Oh please tell me what no other critic has found...) Well, the direction (Is excellent. Most feel Huston should have at least been nominated for his direction...) and the plot (It's a good plot...) and the plot and the plot (I heard you the first time you know...). It just doesn't MOVE (It does you know. They start out in his office, then they go outside, then they go to his house...). It seems to be Bogart holding forth in one room after another (They go outside on at least four or five occasions). Office, hotel room, office, hotel room, office (They go to his house too)..... When I woke up halfway through I had to go back to find what I had missed. (Then you've hardly given it the best of chances, have you?) Well, nothing really. Just Bogey holding forth again and again still. The 'baddie' is obvious from the very start. (Well there's more to the film than just who did it...)
It was brightened up a lot by the appearance of Sydney Greenstreet at the end who was a wonderful actor and made it interesting at last (He was there from about middle distance actually... Are you sure you rewound it back far enough after you fell asleep?). But the ending was awful (No it wasn't. It worked with the dark tone of the movie. SPOILERS ahead, by the way. I thought I should point that since he didn't...). A cheap looking, soapstone, fake statuette and not the marvellous jewel encrusted gold statue of legend (It was lead actually... And it was supposed to be a fake...). The very dated 'message' of the story is that a truly great hero is 'strong' enough to turn his beloved over to justice and puts his principles before his love for a woman (There wasn't really a 'message'. And any message is whatever you want it to be. I would say that, if anything, Spade gave her up to stop the cops arresting him... Besides, she was a cold, manipulative murderer, who felt little remorse for ending a man's life.). Oh, good. That's just what every girl loves. (It's also unoriginal, Alexandre Dumas used this theme in 'The Three Musketeers' (Woo-fucking-hoo. If we include the whole history of the human race, just about everything has been done before...)). So whilst many people will profess to love this blindly because it's a classic and shows Bogart at his most handsome it just didn't work for me. (I didn't love it blindly. I just feel it is an excellent movie, with a complex plot and characters, as well as a superb atmosphere. Don't tell me why I like this film, you know nothing about me.)
Here's one more to finish us off, I'm just too good to you all:
The Bad Guy's Good Guy (Ah, you're suggesting that anyone who considers Spade a good guy, must be a bad guy. Nice.) 
Perhaps it shouldn't come as a suprise that this, the directorial debut of John Huston, and the film that broke Humphrey Bogart out of the 'B' Movies, should be so damned *dark* (There's nothing wrong with that you know...)... after all, it *is* considered the first real film noir. With Dashiell Hammet's hardboiled novel as its source material, "The Maltese Falcon" certainly lays out the cinematic foundations for the the genre: mean streets, trigger-happy heroes, dark shadows and duplicitous dames. (Pretty much fine so far...)
Still, the sheer nastiness of Bogart's Samuel Spade is jarring to the modern viewer (Maybe to some naive child-man. But I would say that he is far less shocking than he once would have been. We're used to anti-heroes), probably because of the way he pokes all our politically-corrct sore-spots (He doesn't really. This was 1941. That's what people were like.). From the opening scene, in which Spade and partner carve up rights over an apparently distraught woman who walks into his office pleading for help (You mean to say that men don't do that now? Pull the other one mate.), Spade is consistently misogynist (1941), amoral, money-grabbing, (That's the whole point of the character. He'd be rather boring otherwise...) brutal (He's not that brutal. He never kills anyone, and doesn't even carry a gun), mendacious (Oh no! He doesn't always tell the truth! Nobody does that anymore!) and mean (He's nicer than almost everyone else in the film). And as we proceed through the labyrinth of schemes, crimes, deaths, danger, and deception surrounding the eponymous Falcon, there's very little to redeem him-- not even competence: for the treasure, when it arrives, practically falls into his lap. (So? Can people not be lucky in films anymore?)
None of this is to deny some innovative filmmaking from Huston, a charismatic performance by Humphrey Bogart, entertaining weirdness from Peter Lorre and some unmissable character acting from Sydney Greenstreet (Well, at least you're right with those). But "The Maltese Falcon" is a uncomfortable viewing today (It really doesn't, you oversensitive nincompoop), centering as it does on a noir anti-hero with none of the scruples, neuroses or hidden soft-sides that are obligatory for the post-modern tough guy. (THEY AREN'T FUCKING OBLIGATORY! There are lots of modern anti-heroes that are far more brutal than Spade. Batman for instance. Stick to watching Disney animations. Obviously not the old, racist ones. But the anything from 1995 ought to be safe enough for you...)
I hate people so very much...

Friday, 4 February 2011

Anthology of Idiocy V

Yes friends, no long wait this time as I'm back with Anthology of Idiocy Episode V: The Idiots Strike Back (I'm fast running out of film series that go up this high...).

We open up today's account with a review from for the classic 1931 version of Frankenstein:
I was delighted to receive the video in the mail today (Haha! You people in the past with your old fashioned technology!). What timing! My class of high school seniors has finished reading Mary Shelley's novel and will be taking their final tomorrow. Afterwards, I thought they would really enjoy the film. Unfortunately, I just finished viewing it and am sick (Was it something you ate?). This adaptation is nothing like the book (Well no. Lots of films aren't like the book. That doesn't stop this film being a stone-cold classic horror film). I am scrambling around looking for one that is! (I understand from someone who's studied English that the book isn't that good anyway to be honest...) I honestly feel I have wasted $... (You haven't. It's an excellent movie)---and on my miserable salary that's painful! The acting, sets, script, camera work, and editing are ridiculously crude (Well it was 1931. What were you expecting? Sleek production on an Avatar scale?). I wish I had saved my money and spent it elsewhere! (Please, stop teaching people...)
Told you it was a poster...
Image via unrealityshout
Next up, following on from my previous post dedicated to House season 1, we have this review for House season 7:
At first glance, House seems like just another banal sitcom (It's not a fucking sitcom! Do you Americans even know what a sitcom is?. This is a bloody drama).  masquerading as something more "smart" and/or "sexy," which is true (Oh, if you say so Your Highness...)--but look a bit deeper and you'll see its success rides on the fact it's a love letter to generation Y detachment and forced irony; bittersweet emotional pornography for those whose lives have failed them. (What the fuck is any of this about? Did you read that other guy's review for season 1 and think 'Wow. That's a good review. I'll do one like that. Using his idiotic opinions'?)

Just look at the DVD cover (Actually that's a poster). "Love sucks." Cue a thousand soul-numbingly boring housewives nodding their heads with a knowing "MMMM-hmmmm." (I hate you.) These producers really know their audience, I'll give them that. (They also know how to make a damn good show.)
And bringing up the rear we have this review for the excellent video game Fallout 3:
Ok,yes,the game was good,but,come on,this has been done...........11 times,i mean,talk about"Copy-Paste"!!! (When? When has this been done before? If you're referring to someone journeying through a post-apocalyptic Earth then yes, I suppose it has been done before. But then, if you only take the setting of something into account then nothing new has been released in centuries...)
Its nothing new,and i just think its one of the copying ones (Just mention something it's copying and then perhaps you'll have a reasonable argument),here is the Good-Bad list 
1:Its a free roaming game,to do whatever you want to do (Yes that is good)
2:You make up your own mind (About what?)

1:Detail:The monsters are 80's crap (No they're not. They're actually pretty sensible, plausible mutations of current animals)
2:Creativity:Its all been done before (And i can't stress that enough) (Yet you haen't mentioned anything that it is similar to...)
3:I could go on for hours :P (And yet you haven't. Let's face it, you can only think of two bad points can't you... And where is a review of the gameplay? Or the graphics? Or anything else game-related?)
That's you're lot for this month. I just know you're looking forward to the next Anthology of Idiocy, but you'll just have to be patient I'm afraid...
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