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the women.
Norma Shearer, Joan Crawford, Rosalind Russell, Paulette Goddard and Joan Fontaine.

if there was going to be a movie that fits that criteria, it'd have to be a notorious women's director. george cuckor fits that bill, so it's no suprize that he has one as good as the women. i've talked about it recently so i won't go into how absolutely marvelous it is, instead, i'd like to talk about one of my favorite cukor screwball comedies, sylvia scarlett. made a full 3 years before bringing up baby, SS is centered on the same stars, cary grant and kate hepburn, but this time hepburn is a tomboy who... well it's kind of victor/victoria, 12th night time, as she dresses up like a boy and no one seems to notice. it's light fluffy fun.

... the last time I saw "The Women," I found it one of the funniest movies I'd ever seen. It came across as a farce...
But I don't think that it's supposed to be a farce.
So, was I laughing with, or at?

Has anyone else read Dawn Powell's (brilliant) satire on Clare B. and Henry Luce, in "A Time to Be Born"? (1942)
I didn't know The Women was partly written by Anita Loos, a writer I actually love (she also created the character of Lorelei Lee--you know, Diamonds Are A Girl's Best Friend). I thought about that film but then I ruled it out because it seemed that the women were being portrayed as natural combatants--people who saw themselves as competitors for a prize that was limited, namely, men. I think SATC does include men as part of women's lives, but the 4 main characters don't seem to be fighting each other for male favours so much as interacting with each other as friends. The men are secondary or peripheral in SATC.
Speak of the devil.

Although...Debra Messing and Eva Mendes and Meg Ryan? That cannot good.

Most of the Extraordinary Machine album is about PTA, I believe. She never says it outright, but I know they used to date and that most of this album was written off the heels of that. Plus, in interviews (and in concert) she literally says some of the songs were about "a bad, bad man" or "a not very nice man." shrug
it's been a while since i've seen the women, but i think that men are just, if not more on the periphery. there is the two leads, who are fighting over a man, but they have very little screen time.
Don't know if this qualifies, but I then recalled Paula Prentiss being in a totally all female movie, with no men on screen at all, and only one male cinematographer. Tracked it down chez IMDB. It's "Friendships, Secrets and Lies" (1979) (TV).

Plus the leads are mostly in their 40's: "Cathryn Damon was 49, Shelley Fabares was 35, Tina Louise was 45, Paula Prentiss was 40, Stella Stevens was 43 and Loretta Swit was 42." The movie ends with then walking together, arms around each other, smiling...

The was also a staged version of The Women, shown on PBS. With Jennifer Tilly & ...??

Luce wrote the play & Loos the filmscript.

Thanks for the tips, on the remake and Fiona's Ex Ma, FT2
anna k
I saw the 1930s version of The Women in school. It was good, but I didn't think much about it afterwards.

The remake looks fine, but a little cheesy.
I saw that staged, televised version of The Women, with costumes by Isaac Mizrahi, but I came in mid-drama (I was flicking around, and saw the costumes--honestly that's what caught my interest, they were all spectacularly Hollywood-Era black, white, cream, and pale peach, predominately). I recall a scene with Jennifer Coolidge where she sucked on a cigarette while suckling a baby to her breast.

movies with women leads? steel magnolias, divine secrets of the ya-ya sisterhood, practical magic... all of those movies have 4 or more women/girls as the leads and (imo) they're not just "fluff".

i have yet to see the women. something that, i suspect, shall be rectified soon.

The Enchanted April, the 1992 version. It's not out on DVD mad.gif and it's one of my favorite movies, about 4 English women who rent a castle in Italy in the 1920's to get away from something in their lives. Has Miranda Richardson and Joan Plowright as the most well-known females and Alfred Molina is probably the best-known guy in it. Mike Newell directed it- he's also done Four Weddings and a Funeral and HP: Goblet of Fire.

Great book too. It was also made into a movie in the '30's, but I've never seen that one.
funny, polly, I've just purchased the book of The Enchanted April! Not seen the film.

I've been racking my brains trying to come up with films where there are four over forty female leads and the only one I could think of was Steel Magnolias (four of the six leads were over forty at the time!) Other than that... Big Business if you count the two sets of Bette Midler/Lily Tomlin twins as four leads?! The only thing that comes close to SaTC recently is Friends with Money and it was nowhere near as good. Zoya is right: SaTC did the warts and all examination of the four over forty women exceptionally well; the glamour of the series was toned down and it was a harsher insight into the realities of the lives. There was one scene where SJP was without makeup and she did look old and tired (she was supposed to, as she was in emotional pain) and it really struck me as it looked so real-life.

I really struggled to come up with some good films with multiple strong female leads in general and a lot of what I did come up with was from the 80s or early 90s (Thelma & Louise, Fried Green Tomatoes, Mystic Pizza etc.) and the more recent and fabulous Volver.
Volver--and practically every film by Almodovar. I completely forgot about them all. Volver, and it's "predecessor", The Flower of my Secret--where the novelist throws out a manuscript (whose plot happens to be the plot of Volver, filmed almost 20 years later...very, very clever). Kika, Talk To Her, oh my god there are just so many female protagonist, female interaction, female dynamic films he's made, with women of every age and appearance, too. Even if the female characters are not "present", they are the movie's main focus.

But there are not many directors like him. I sometimes wonder about Bergman--but I haven't seen as many of his films as I have Almodovar. Steel Magnolias is a film I'd almost forgotten about but these films are so few and far between that it's always hard to bring them to mind.

I think it's interesting how many of the films actually come from directors who are not Hollywood dependent. I'm still really peeved at mainstream ideas about "feminist" films--to me, Thelma and Louise was an interesting little study of what happens to standard film tropes--the whole rebel/buddy film--when you apply gender to the portrayal. What works for Butch Cassidy and the Sundance kid to create heroes of those boys just ends up being your typical Hollywood Code "dykes-must-die" film rule when it's applied to women. I would have been much happier if we'd seen the girls get away for good, alive--not have to watch yet another example of the proper filmic disposal of bad, bad women who've defended themselves pay for the privilege of adulthood by offing themselves expediently. So we can all rest easy as the status quo's preserved.
anna k
All About My Mother is one of his best. I saw it nearly ten years ago and was shocked at how good it was. The mother, the nun, the transsexual, the actress, all of them were superb.

Muriel's Wedding is a great film for female friendships on film. Rhonda both sticks up for Muriel and tells her when she's being an asshole, and Rachel Griffiths gets to say two memorable lines of the film:

Stick your drink up your arse, Tania. I'd rather swallow razor blades than have a drink with you.


Sorry Mum. You know I love you, but you drive me crazy. And you three, what a bunch of cocksuckers.

I don't know if the ending of Thelma and Louise was Callie Khouri's idea. I'd hate it if it was. I like the idea of living and dying on their own terms, but it would've been great if they got away with it at the end. That would be more of a fantasy, though. I'm reminded of a Robot Chicken parody where they're mangled at the bottom of the canyon, presumed dead, and saying that jail would've been a better alternative than diving off the cliff.

This was for teens, but I liked The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants. It made me happy when I watched it.
anna k
I watched The Devil's Rejects last night. It was good in parts (70's Southern rock music, desert setting, dusty-looking cinematography), but also seemed predictable, like the dialogue sounded really cliched and forced. The only thing I found creepy/disturbing was a DVD featurette of a cheerleader character who is mentioned in the film as having been killed earlier about to be raped on camera as the murderer tussles with her. It looked real and very unsettling.

Plus Rob Zombie's casting of actors known for horror and B-movies reminded me of Quentin Tarantino and Eli Roth's casting of cult figures in their films. I did recognize Ginger Lynn Allen as the sexual fantasy of one guy, and when I saw P.J. Soles' name in the ending credits, I thought "Another horror reference." It looked funny to me to se Elizabeth Daily playing a broke-down gutter-mouthed hooker, thinking of her cartoon voiceovers or being Dottie in Pee-Wee's Big Adventure. That role must have been a hoot for her. (Also I did see her play a hooker in an old movie, but it was more of a sunny, cute call girl rather than the one here).
In there will be blood,
Daniel DL's voice and physical presence are extraordinary. I didn't realize how large he was. (My first awareness of him was in My Beautiful Laundrette & Room with a View, where he is effete.)

As for that voice,
he was directed by PTA to take inspiration from John Huston, so listen for that. And then think of Chinatown in particular, wherein JH is similarly powerful and demonic, and the main deal is (similarly) fighting over natural resources in early Southern Cal.

Also, they (PTA & DDL) were watching Treasure the Sierra Madre, directed by Huston, starring his father Walter H., which (similarly) is all about lust for natural resources, in the desert, and the loss of humanity, thereby. (Time for me to see that one again.)

I certainly liked that it was a different kind of movie.
Also, the effort that PTA put into getting the physical setting and esp. the machinery right.

[Spoiler alert!]

One part which I especially enjoyed was the trek from dry to wet, from the inland desert... along the proposed pipeline, beginning with the Bandy property (which is oasis-like, by contrast) and then moving west down to the coast, by horse... through the rolling hills (California scenery which I recall happily from my Stanford years there)-- and finally both men plunge into the sea....

But then Plainview discovers that Henry has tricked him... and so has to kill him, even though Henry/Noah has become his partner, confidante, & "brother". Revenge is the first law of nature: There will be blood.

I always wait for a movie to come to DVD; then make its way to the library; then wait on a list of people who've reserved it; so I'm usually a bit later with my "reviews".

I just watched Juno this weekend. First of all, I'll say it's worth a second watch, very entertaining all the way through, wonderful soundtrack, and I'm sure there's stuff I missed that I'll catch on an additional viewing.

I think what stuck out most to me (and I hadn't seen happen much before in movies) was the idea it put across that men in their 30's could have something to learn from a teenage girl. Bateman's character is inspired by Juno to make a choice, and to be responsible about it.

She also, through mixtapes, "gives him a bit of a punk/rock-n-roll education." So a teenage girl has more knowledge about music than a 30-something the internet age, this is certainly possible. I like the fact the movie brought that up.

I also loved how there was no "evil villian". Many times in a movie where there's a teen girl pregnant, the world like, comes to an end or something, people have to fight...but here, every character was pretty sympathetic (yes, even Bateman's, I thought). This movie had a theme of, chill...

I love how there was the theme of choice, as well.

I also love the relationship June had with her baby's dad, Michael Cera. And with her own dad.

I read Diablo Cody's interview in BUST. It was mentioned that certain people didn't like the "rapid fire dialogue" of the Juno character. So I was prepared to maybe feel like Juno wasn't realistic, or there was no way she could be that smart. After seeing the movie though, I have no idea what those people were talking about..? Juno was not anymore rapid-fire or wisecracking than any other teenage girl I know, and I know several, and actually, she wasn't as quick-witted, confident, or quick to give her opinion as several of the ones I know. So whomever made that comment probably just doesn't know teenage girls aside from pics on the internet. Also, I happen to have been a rather wiseass at that age, so it's nothing new..?? Perhaps it's simply so new to make teenage girl characters into something besides stupid empty pretty sidekicks, that it caught certain people with their pants down.

Anyway, 2 thumbs up, and I'm picky. Diablo Cody is sharp and seems to have her act together. I can't wait to see her next work.

Seeing some nice "reviews" here, and great recommendations too.
So that's who Daniel Day Lewis reminded me of. I've just recently watched Chinatown again (I really love that movie, it's so dark and chilly under all that glowing California sunshine. John Huston is terrifying and seductive at the same time, like any good heinous criminal should be).

I hadn't considered the Juno character's effect on the adult men in the film, but that's a good point, i_am_jan. I think the intention was to show what might happen to a child who's relationships are all sane and relatively healthy--with parents, friends, people she meets, her opposed to your "problem" child from a "problem" home, and everyone has a "problem" life around her. God knows we've had enough cinematic portrayals of that character.

I'm thinking Diablo Cody is an insecure writer, who's had to do a lot of "look at me!!! look at ME!!!" in the past...but now she's been given credit, so I hope she doesn't feel like she's got to bow to some longstanding sense of self-doubt anymore. I'd like to see what she can create when she's confidently aware of her own strengths, and knows the value of her way of telling about her experience and stories.
anna k
I'm looking forward to Jennifer Body's. Something about it reminds me of Ginger Snaps. Ordinary teen girl gets transformed into something unholy and uses her sexuality as a weapon.
anna k
I watched Factotum. It was well-acted, but the story bored me. I liked little moments, but didn't care about it as a whole. I do like that the love interests are age-appropriate (not 21-year olds to Henry's 40-something), and was surprised that Adrienne Shelly was in so little of it. I think one of her scenes got cut, it was shown during the making-of featurette, and it was bittersweet to hear the director praising her performance, calling her "fantastic."
Indeed, ChaCha, the absence of women are are forceful, intelligent, attractive, sexy (the whole package) is just lamentable. Compare the "fast-talking dame" of decades past (such as Barbara Stanwyck in that Lady Eve) and it seems like feminism has not come through on the big screen.

Seeing Ann Sheridan in "Torrid Zone" (1940, what a title!) dishing it out with James Cagney (worthy opponent!) was such a revelation for me: a woman who was confident, sharp, knowing, quick, fetching, sexy-- and who wasn't to be punished for any of this.

When I was bitching about this dearth, a friend sent me off to watch the remake of the Thomas Crown Affair. As it turned out, the Rene Russo character does start out as a tough cooky... but in the end... she is broken. Ugh. > Man on top!

Give me a break,


"I'm still really peeved at mainstream ideas about "feminist" films--to me, Thelma and Louise was an interesting little study of what happens to standard film tropes--the whole rebel/buddy film--when you apply gender to the portrayal. What works for Butch Cassidy and the Sundance kid to create heroes of those boys just ends up being your typical Hollywood Code "dykes-must-die" film rule when it's applied to women. I would have been much happier if we'd seen the girls get away for good, alive--not have to watch yet another example of the proper filmic disposal of bad, bad women who've defended themselves pay for the privilege of adulthood by offing themselves expediently. So we can all rest easy as the status quo's preserved."
*ding* the lady wins a prize!

right on the mark, dolor. i think that is the starting point for all i find wrong with american cinema right now.

i could not imagine a more apropos word than 'lamentable' either. in so many ways any sort of cinematic sharp edges, individuality, difference seems to be subsumed in a sort of filmic 'invasion of the body snatchers' bland simulacra. one in which no matter how many things we see going wrong, no matter how much we want something else, our voice is silenced, our mouth sewn shut, or worse, like neo in the matrix, our lips just grown together. to cop a title from harlan ellison, 'i have no mouth and i must scream.'

worse, most times when someone is a bit outraged, and tries to do something political or different in a movie, the critics are more than eager to dismiss it as, "too much." what ever happened to critics who wanted to expand their reader's understanding of filmic possibilities? why do most film review consist of 80% synapsis, 18% catty comment, 2%-- if that--film analysis?

no wonder film critics are getting laid off and people are going to the web for equally if not more vapid movie reviews. there's scant little difference.

The remake of the Thomas Crowne Affair! I just watched the original--dubbed in French, because it was the only station playing it, and it was late, and I was unable to sleep....(it looked so stylish and slick, as a bank heist movie should--I'm sure the French dubbing didn't hurt to enhance that).

Please just let me say Faye Dunaway's version of the character Rene Russo plays has a lot more strength and intelligence and savvy in comparison. It's interesting, it proves Trouble's point. Way back in the 70's when that movie was made, and it was typical to see a lot more porkiness in men's magazines or ads or anywhere about women, filmic portrayals were at least open to the idea of unapologetically strong, smart women. Thirty years later: not so much. I'm guessing it's because women were asserting themselves that way and demanding to see themselves portrayed that way somewhere in the media. It's not an accident so many of the brilliant female characters of the older films were all part of what was happening during the 40's. That was another time when women didn't want to be told to get in the kitchen and stay there. That was a time when women were finally being given access to work that men did--and almost the same kind of pay men got. If you were a film financier and wanted to sell tickets, your female characters had to look like the female audience you wanted to profit from. But we all know, when that ended and everyone wanted the women to go back to the kitchen, the women we saw on film turned into sex bombs, or feminine ideals of silence, modesty, prettiness, and generally being someone's nice mommy. Never a witty comeback there, for a whole couple of decades. And if there are witty comebacks, they're like the kind Rosalind Russel makes in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes: Funny, but no threat to anyone.

As for film criticism, it's all about selling a film you're paid to sell, damning a film you're paid to damn. There are no more Pauline Kaels. I liked her a lot: there was a woman with a very sharp, very precise critical mind. If we'd have had more like her in the last 20 years or so, it's unlikely we'd be seeing the kind of two hour commercials that pass for movies these days.

I watched the Sex and The City movie this weekend. It's not the simple little movie I thought it would be, it's got a few ancient cinematic conventions of its own it plays with, kind of shocking in a modern context really. If you push yourself past the product placement extravaganza of a fairy tale that it is....I'm still working out what to make of its "skeleton" of women.
ChaCha Dahling,

In regard to Paris, Je T'aime" do you (or anyone else?) know who directed your fave?:

"My favourite vignette was the one with the voice over, with the husband who meets his wife in a cafe intending to break with her, to leave her for his mistress. But then he changes his mind completely when she tells him she's dying and remembers he's so deeply in love with her that he never gets over her when she dies."

I watched the 1st 4 last night it was a transcendental snooze, so now I wanna pick n chooze.
Will seek out the A Payne one that you and FT2 grooved to. And??

Will be watching "Treasure of the Sierra Madre" pronto, this being a tangent from There Will be Blood. And then, as a tangent from TotSM I'm gonna watch Huston's "The Misfits." Again! A movie I've found consistently fascinating, esp. as the final gasp of Gable & Monroe. Also, it's the movie that taught me the amazingness of beautiful wounded Montgomery Clift. >>>>> His look of... cosmic distraction....

Hey GT, you see I mostly watch a swirl of old flicks, so I can't generalize about movies today (like you) or reviewers today (ditto). But you're a wise one, I'm sure. I love it when you shake your fist!

*shakes her fist and giggles*

you know i'd do almost anything to make you happy don't you, my dangerously, deleriously, dreamy dahlink dolor?

yeah cha, ifc has a documentary they show periodically, a decade under the influence, that's all about films in the 70's. for the longest time i dismissed everything from the 70's but once my taste in films started to mature, i gravitated towards the films back then. in so many ways they were about challenging the status quo. after all, this was the period after the studio star system had fallen apart, and the horrible demon-child called a blockbuster had not been birthed. american studios were desperate to throw films at the wall and see what stuck. and after the 60's the country was restless, looking for answers and new ideas. films were perfectly positioned.... i only wish films now were so rebellious, so daring, so ready to bite the hand that feeds them...
I saw Funny Games last night. It scared me a little. Those two guys were so sick and sick looking. Their faces were strange. I kept waiting for something to happen to them. When the wife shot the one guy I was so freaking happy and then they rewind back to after she prays. I was so dissapointed. I wanted the parents to have some small victory. When they pushed her off the boat I was screaming inside. It was on my mind the rest of the night and all this morning. Very crazy movie.

On a completely different note. Has anyone seen The Polar Express? I just love the Hot Chocolate sceen. Friends were over last week with their two small children and we watched it.

Also watched The Grinch with Jim Carry. Love that movie too.

I don't know why I like to always watch Christmas movies in the summer. Does anyone else do that?


Yup, I saw the Polar Express... Liked the visuals, especially the momentum of the train and the arrival at the glowing empire at the North Pole. There was somethign missing in the story... but I can't recall what.

The last page of the book (have you read it?) is so poignant... as we lose our ability to hear the bells... saying goodbye to childhood's wonder.... almost heartbreaking...

The imagery of the book is more painterly and romantic that the movie.
My friends refuse to go see Don't Mess With The Zohan with me. I need new friends.

Just re-watched Notes On A Scandal on dvd, sheer genius. Aside from everything else that's great about it I liked seeing an older woman go after a much younger boy, and understanding why. It's just so often the opposite (old man, young girl) as if it could only ever go that way - I liked seeing the drive of older women in a way that wasn't condescending.

Someone once recommended the original Funny Games to me, as the scariest movie they'd ever seen. I never got past the wiki plot synopsis. It sounds like just the type of movie that would really but really bother me. I can't get my head around torture movies.
vixen_within, I love Notes on a Scandel, but I disagree with you a bit. The teenage boy went after her, and she made a very foolish decision which cost her and her family much stress and humiliation... I liked the movie because it showed how a thing like that can occur. She was lonely and feeling unfulfilled. Judi Dench played the shit out of the psychotic Barbara Covette. I was more interested in the relationship and the fight scene between the two women. I think that was more the point of the film.

I just saw a bootlegged version of 'Wanted' it was meh. Average. What really boggles me is this tough girl image that A.J.'s got in the film... the only part of her that looks tough is her face. But, don't try to convince me that she can fight or even hold heavy objects for very long. She has no muscle what-so-ever. She looked so gangly when she was beating McEvoy's character.
I seriously recommend, with all of my heart, WALL-E. It is honestly magnificent. I saw it at midnight on Thursday/the Friday it came out, and it is just beautiful. Plus, the 'girl' robot is super kickass and brave and independent and smart and daring-it's so cool when I think about all of the little girls who will fall in love with her.

I promise you you won't be disappointed with this movie!!!
Just reserved Notes on a Scandal from the library, this sounds like a must-see... I will also be waiting for WALL-E to come to the library (I never go to the movies, nor can I afford to buy DVDs).

Uh wow, AJ does appear a bit undernourished to be an action hero? I assume she carries a huge assault weapon at all times.

I am happy to recommend Small Town Gay Bar! Got it at the's from 2006 so someone may have talked about it here already. It's a really authentic look at gay culture (or a sore lack thereof) in very small towns in America. Most of the action takes place at a bar called Rumors in small-town Mississippi. There's lots of handsome lesbians and beautiful drag queens. I am always fascinated to watch just how easy it is for men to look like women, women to look like men, so I loved all the drag. Anyway, be warned, you may cry at this, the tales of the inhumane treatment and constant threats gay people are under, particularly in small, isolated regions. You definitely will mostly laugh and smile though. Down to earth, small town, gay peeps with awesome southern accents.
QUOTE(neurotic.nelly @ Jul 4 2008, 02:05 PM) *
vixen_within, I love Notes on a Scandel, but I disagree with you a bit. The teenage boy went after her, and she made a very foolish decision which cost her and her family much stress and humiliation... I liked the movie because it showed how a thing like that can occur. She was lonely and feeling unfulfilled. Judi Dench played the shit out of the psychotic Barbara Covette. I was more interested in the relationship and the fight scene between the two women. I think that was more the point of the film.

I just saw a bootlegged version of 'Wanted' it was meh. Average. What really boggles me is this tough girl image that A.J.'s got in the film... the only part of her that looks tough is her face. But, don't try to convince me that she can fight or even hold heavy objects for very long. She has no muscle what-so-ever. She looked so gangly when she was beating McEvoy's character.

Oh, I wasn't glorifying her decision to pursue him, I'm just pleased that the possibility of it is being acknowledged in a good story. Agreed, Judi Dench was fuckin' A in that role, and what a role.

Okay, my BF dragged me to see Wall-E and I'm sorry to say I'm among the minority who could hardly bear to sit through the whole thing. Maybe animation just isn't my bag or something...

i_am_jan, your movie recommendation reminded me of another great one called For The Bible Tells Me So; it's about deep fundie xtians who have children who are gay and how that affects & changes their views. It was very very good.
In Bruges: well, it certainly makes me want to go to Bruges. To eat chocolate and drink beer, and walk along the canals. This October?

The movie began more twee & cute than I expected... then ended up more bloody than I was expecting.

Is this rad mix part of the Tarentino effect, or were we headed there anyway?

My doubts here point back to similar apprehensions about those Coen bros. That mix.

Up soon: Twilight Samurai.
Known by you, Ms. GirlTrouble?

known by, yes, but that doesn't mean i've seen it. unfortunately, i haven't, although i've heard fantastic things about it.

it falls in to the group of movies i want to see, but haven't. god i am so far behind in my movie watching. i've still got romance from netflix. it was mailed to me 7 mos to a year ago...still haven't seen it. wtf?!

tell me what you think of it my darling dolomite! and if you and cha charming can recommend a movie i couldn't possibly resisting as soon as it arrives in my mailbox, i'd be greatful. i'm ashamed at my lack of "movitvational movitude." lately...

i've got volver from the library, and i usually love almovadar, but i can't be bothered to watch movies of late..

ETA:i'm watching part of 'disturbia' on hbo-- my friend called it "dawson's creek does 'rear window.'" laugh.gif

ETA2: just saw teh HELLBOY2! SOOOO FREAKIN' GOOD! it's like this sweet, romantical comeek book action movie love letter to monster movies, and yeah, even it's own godzilla. add to that's got a green message, and song (but no dance) number too. i lurved the first one, and this one is better. how can you not love a movie that chooses puppets over CGI in most scenes, which gives it a slightly george pal/clash of the titans feel in the best way.

*sigh* it made me want to hunt down some of the italian sci fi space operas i saw when i was a kid...
LOL, very true re: Disturbia. My friend and I were talking about how much we loved that movie simply for the (very high) cheese factor. It's soooooo stupid, but it amuses us.

I've mostly been watching a bunch of really bad movies lately (Fool's Gold, anyone?). I've been sick and helpless in bed for a few days, though...that's my excuse.

I watched The Visitor a few days ago. Unfortunately, I was well into my fever by the time it was over, but I liked it.

i saw teh HELLBOY2 this morning! sooooooo good!

it's like this supercool comic book romance action movie love letter to monster movies and outcasts. <3 and yes, it even has it's own king kong/godzilla-- not to mention a song (but no dance) number in it.
*sigh* the swell thing is that they use puppets/men in suits more often that CGI, so it's feels more real, and gives it this great, george pal/clash of the titans feel without being cheesy.

it kinda made me want to go hunt down some of those old italian spaghetti-space operas of the 60's and 70's...
I have to say that There Will Be Blood, No Country For Old Men and American Gangster were all big let downs IMO. They were really built up in the media and after seeing them I was dissapointed. Makes me very scared for when Dark Knight comes out. They have built that movie up to be so great that I'm afraid once I see it I won't like it. Same for Hellboy 2 and Iron Man. Are they really as good as everyone is saying?
Hey Tea-Gal,

If you're enjoying more life and less flix,
more dancing in the sunshine and less sitting alone in the dark a-screening,
then I salute you, raise my belgian beer at you...

dolor-mitely yours,

PS Love that romantic profile of you, when it rolls around...
LMP, I've heard good things (mostly from my husband) about Hellboy II (and GirlTrouble loved it!) and Iron Man both--the other films did get a lot of media attention because, let's face it, they're super huge budget with big fat movie stars and lots of death and destruction and complicated scenery films. When you spend that much, you'll need a lot of promotion to make some of it back--and ultimately people will love those films on their own merits or not, no matter what the hype is about.

Personally, I thought American Gangster was not very interesting, though very flashy. I was fixated on the idea of how successful the character can be, in business--and yeah, the drug trade is just another kind of multi-national-more-powerful-than-any-government corporation, really, not at all different from something like Hewlett Packard or Nabisco or Eli Lilly (and the various gangster criminals we call Sir or Mr. President running the show there). We never see certain types of characters that way, especially here in North America where we're so touchy touchy about race; we never see black characters or hispanic characters showing these skills, so when it's actually the point of the movie, we pay attention. In the end, though, it gets to me that we're always seeing the Black characters as "extraordinary" but only in the "shadow" realms--yeah, the American Gangster character had a brilliant corporate model business mind, think what an amazing CEO he coulda been!, but we just get to see it in the drug trade. Never when he's working at Apple or some vastly powerful financial corporation with offices in every outpost all over the world. Oh, no.

Even there, however, I've seen that whole story line of race perception limiting potential in other, cheaper, smaller scale independent films. With less pricey actors, and far superior script writing. Just a whole lot more "true" and more incisive and critical about us as a society than a film like American Gangster will ever be. Maybe being letdown is a good thing--the sign of some hunger to be served up some real "stuff" to chew on?

Last night I watched About A Boy again, because I'm a big idiot about Hugh Grant's comic timing. I admit I've even watched him in that film he made with Drew Barrymore. If you're lining up your slings and arrows, though, please consider: it was Hugh or a CD collection of all the Sister Wendy episodes ever shown by PBS...Hugh= harmony; Sister Wendy = watching all on my lonesome. Hugh's my guilty pleasure, okay?

chacha - i also saw The Five People You Meet In Heaven recently and I love it. I loved What Dreams May Come and this was even better IMO.
I'm surprised to know a film was made from that book--and I'm curious about it because the cast looks great. Glad you liked those (and thanks for linking them up. I've been trying to remember the name of that Robin Williams film for weeks!)
chacha - Watching 5 People made me feel like I was watching a musical but without the music. Does that make sense? I believe it was the way it was shot. Strange, I've never seen a movie like it before. All the scenes are very one-on-one. The main character talking to one of his five people. There are people in the background but you don't hear a lot from them. It was very personal. I'm no writier so I can't give you a review like you gave me of American Gangster. However, I can say that I thought it was a very good movie. smile.gif
Those who found "American Gangster" of interest may then want to seek out the documentary on Nicky Barnes, the drug kingpin (played by Cuba Gooding in AG): "Mr. Untouchable" (2007).

Revelatory for the level of delusion "enjoyed" by Barnes: his indifference to the misery and death which his money-seeking empire visited upon Harlem, and the innocent.
I was watching Little Women (1949) yesterday. I love this movie. The scene where Beth goes to Mr. Laurence and thanks him for the piano. She cries and kisses him. It brings me to tears. She's my favorite in the film. I also love Joe because she's so outspoke and not the "norm" according to society. She reminds me of myself. Anyone else love this movie?
ChaChaHeels, you have no reason to feel guilty for watching About A Boy. It's one of my family's favorites. It's a mainstream film that focuses on an unconventional relationship & that's a nice change of pace. It's interesting to see the affect the main characters have on eachother. (I get an additional thrill because one of my old acting teachers is in it, but I like the movie for much more than his short appearance).

I saw Being Julia the other day. Annette Benning plays an English theatrical actress in the 1920s. I enjoyed her acting & I freakin' loved the costumes & sets. However, the ending totally ruined it for me. I've spent a long long time in the theatre & I know that if she'd tried to pull off that crap in the real world, she would NOT have been praised for it. I don't care how angry and hurt you are; the actor should NOT fuck around with the script. Period.

Since seeing Wall-E I have a mild obsession with Hello Dolly. I'd forgotten how much I loved that musical. I know people say Barbara was too young to play that part, but she was so damn entertaining in it that I think Gene Kelley should be forgiven for casting her.
Thanks RoseV! I don't actually feel guilty about the movie itself--I love Nick Hornby's books and they end up making some fantastic movies. I am not sure why but I feel like I have a guilt about liking Hugh Grant. To me he's the modern version of Carey Grant! Well, not sartorially, of course, but in his comedic delivery. I wish we had directors like Hitchcock around now, who would utilize what Grant's got--looks, timing, and skill (I'm sure he can be menacing but he's never been given a chance). Can you see him in Carey's place in To Catch A Thief, for example? He could totally pull it off.

You know, I completely loved Being Julia. I thought that script-fucking was appropriate, especially since the world seemed to be telling old Julia she's just far too old to be of any use any more, theatrically. Yes, what she did was unforgivable, but it's not hard to believe it could be done by someone with that much character and that much strength--a kind of massive "go to hell".

I like to think of that whole film as a kind of metaphor about women and the way traditional forms of relationships (with men, with careers--even ones with institutions like theatre which have provided women with an opportunity to really shine and become well known by the world--to a point) can put us all in Julia's place. I know the actor does not fuck around with the script, ever: but what if the script/stage/other people with whom she's always collaborated faithfully in the past fuck around with her, as they do with Julia? It does my heart good to see one woman refute all of that so well, repercussions be damned.
My cousin and I went to see the midnight showing of The Dark Knight. It was soo good!
I thought the Dark Knight was great, much darker than Batman Begins and Ledger is fantastic: he plays the Joker as this utterly amoral, thwarted little boy. Blows the socks off of Nicholson's-by-numbers version.

I just saw a trailer for the 2009 Watchmen film. AWESOME.
I saw The Dark Knight today. I looooooooved it. My brother works at a movie theatre so hopefully he can get me in to see it again.

Was anyone else majorly impressed with how they made Two Face look? Everyone else seemed horrified but I was just like "Awesome!!"
anna k
I thought Two-Face looked like the melted Terminator, but it was great work with his eye and half of his mouth/jaw.
I am not a superhero/comic book person, but I make an exception when I hear that a movie in that genre has a good story and acting. This was definitely true with The Dark Knight. I thought Heath Ledger was reminiscent of Kevin Spacey in Se7en- crazy for the sake of crazy, and well-done at that.

Yeah, I know nothing about Watchmen, but even that looked really good to me.
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